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NASA Mars Exploration Program

NASA to test making rocket fuel ingredient on Mars

WASHINGTON (AP) — NASA plans to make oxygen — a key ingredient of rocket fuel — on Mars early next decade. Space agency officials Thursday unveiled seven instruments they plan to put on a Martian rover that would launch in 2020, including two devices aimed at bigger Mars missions in the future. The $1.9 billion rover will include an experiment that will turn carbon dioxide in the Martian atmosphere into oxygen. It could then be used to make rocket fuel and for future astronauts to breathe, said NASA associate administrator for exploration Bill Gerstenmaier. Taking fuel to Mars for return flights is heavy and expensive. The device, named MOXIE, works like an engine...