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The global dust storm of a century, the dying message of an indomitable robot, and a unicorn who just can’t let go of a mystery.

(Now with a dramatic reading by Skijaramaz - Tone Shift.)
(Russian translation available at ponyfiction.org.)

Chapters (26)
Comments ( 1451 )

Okay ow my feels

Wow. This is going to be wonderful.

Because caring matters :moustache:

Finally *sniff* Found one

Wanderer D

This was great, thanks for sharing. Looking forward to more.

Well, this is interesting.

On the Shield of Arms of the first permanent Mars Colony?

Through Endeavour and Perseverence, Opportunity.

What I would like to propose as maybe intresting, due to shows shout outs and alternate computer systems, is that but for a couple of slight alterations in history, Opportunity and the rest, could have been powered by CaOS.

Still lets see how far Glim takes WindRiver?

I missed the detailed engineering descriptions. What is the Tau value? I only know it from Time Dilation values. As in Tau 0 is you move so close to light speed, your personal time rate is 0 relative to the universe.

GNU Opportunity.

Fuckers got me cryin' over here.

the feels for MER-B :fluttercry:

The tau level, at least in this context, describes atmoshperic opacity, i.e. how much sunlight is getting through the atmosphere. This was especially relevant to Spirit and Opportunity as they got their energy almost exclusively from solar panels.

Tau levels on Mars in Oppotunity's location usually average around 0.5.

So the record 10.8 measured in its last transmission basically tells you that almost no sunlight made it through to its solar panels, making it almost impossible to generate power from sunlight during the the global dust storm.


Ah, so its like pH? Negative log of the transmission of vaccuum? I thought the last number I saw in a news article was 0.0008% or something rediculously low. Needing a 24 bit sensor?

Well, I'm not gonna pretend like I'm an expert on engineering or science.

But the low number you saw on the news was probably the efficiency of the solar panels. The problem Opportunity faced was bascially this: The 2018 Global Dust Storm kicked up a lot of, you guessed it, dust. With all the dust in the atmosphere, less sunlight was getting through, decreasing the efficiency of the solar panels Opportunity depended upon.

To make things even worse, all that dust also settled on the panels themselves, further decreasing the power it could generate because the layer of dust was obscuring the sun.

Up to this point, dust devils and other wind events would periodically clean off the solar panels, but the 2018 Global Storm was simply too much.

Oh my lord, a fic about Opportunity? I honestly never thought I'd see the day.
That little rover was amazing, and I can't wait to see what you decide happens next.

You hit me right in the feels too, ow I cried two nights ago because of this little rover and now I feel like crying again

:fluttercry: Goddamnit I'm crying....again

Heh, the little hero of humankind.

Just a note, that well known "My battery is low and it's getting dark" is a poetic translation of the actual data the rover sent. It probably just reported known light levels, internal clock time and the battery level. As the rover runs out of energy, its internal clock will slowly stop as well, without it, the drone won't know when to start up and go to sleep mode.
An undisturbed internal clock, since Oppy has just been saved, will probably not sync up with Equestria's day/night cycle, so Starlight would need to come up with a spell or something to charge it during the night.

Tears for a robot ... am I pathetic? Or is the author just good at getting the readers to feel emotions?

More please.

this pony can not stop itself for everything has life no matter its origin. that robot was a hero of its era and is ours in memory

Ah hell yeah! A story about opportunity! Will be keeping an eye on this one.

You have my attention, and my tracking

Hmm, I wonder what she'd make of it if she'd happened to overhear old AO-7 sometime? If you listen to some of the WAVs linked in the conversation (especially that first one) you can *hear* the pitch fluctuating while it transmits its telemetry as the current draw from the transmitter pulls down the voltage due to the fact that the batteries are basically out of circuit now and it's running off of nothing but its ancient 1970s solar panels at this point.

F in the chat please

And we welcome Opportunity as the latest member to join the ranks of entities that are the subject of "___ in Equestria" fics, it's about time that autonomous robots gets more representation.

*** Attempting to read tau level: Starlight detected ***


We love you, Oppy!!! :applecry:

I’m not reading this
I don’t wanna cry

Somehow it doesn't surprise me that it's Starlight who made this connection. She does seem to have an affinity for Mars.

My initial reaction of: What the actual heck? after reading the title and sinopsis is now overshadowed by my eagerness to read more of this story. You have a talent to transmit emotion through the words you write.

By all means use this opportunity to get back into the swing of things! I on the otherhand am enjoying this little snippet 'slice of life' story.

I salute the little rover for doing such an amazing job; and our empathy for other life even if said 'life' may not be what we usually think life is; is simply beautiful, not pathetic in any way shape or form. Only beautiful.

May that brave wonder have experienced happy dreams in its last moments.

Man, this touched hard. I'm a diehard mars rover fan, and reading this was pretty special. Thank you. Also,


heh, I see what you did there

Somewhere, right now, a heart has been touched.

This story is beautiful.

Starlight must be bigger than a Clydesdale if the rover is small in comparison to her, because Opportunity was actually the size of a small golf cart, standing 1.5 meters (4.9 ft) high, 2.3 meters (7.5 ft) wide, and 1.6 meters (5.2 ft) long and weighing 180 kilograms (400 lb).

You know? That little sentence is us just connecting with the rover.

Sure, it was just a little readout of battery levels and light signatures, but we interpeted that to be sympathetic.

We connect with them.

I would say you make a happier ending for Opportunity, but that would be me giving up on the human dream of reaching the stars, and mars, and spreading the good things of humanity.

So I'm just going to say, good luck on your story. May it be one of many that you tell.

*** Attempting to read tau level: Starlight detected ***

Yes, she's right in front of you, well done. Now tell us about the sky. :twilightsmile:

haven't read the story yet. just wanted to say what a coinky dink. *looks at my profile pic*

Have my upvote, and my undivided attention.

Love this story and cant wait to see where it goes :pinkiehappy:
Spirit and Oppy were kinda close to home for me, since I followed them fairly closely from the day they landed on the red planet. I was hoping that someone would do a story on two of my favorite things, mlp and mars rovers :twilightblush:

(on a side note since no one has mentioned it and I'm absolutely sure you already know, I'll be that annoying guy and say the rover in the story pic is Curiosity and not Oppy. :twistnerd: ok, there its been said :moustache: )

H2GO #40 · Feb 26th, 2019 · · 28 · Prologue ·

The rover is not dead.
Pewdiepie rated it a 10/10, so it is universal law that the 'Opportunity Rover that Could' will live on forever.

It is scientifically proven by all 9 year olds.

H2GO #41 · Feb 26th, 2019 · · 35 · Prologue ·

by the way remember to subscribe to PewDiePie

This story is already wonderful and it'd be really good if you could write a lot more of it please. I have had a void in my life for the last four months since The Maretian wrapped up.

umm, it's KSP? (Kerbal Space Program)

i think it's real life, the mars rover stopped sending messages, last message was battery low(or something similar)

The massage was a bare-bones data dump indicating it was low on power as a storm approached.

Also can’t wait for it to be seen wondering around ponyvile and the world as it gets stuck indoors or taking random samples from their floors and walls or something. :)

The feels!

T h e F e e l s

I love how much we've humanized the little guy. The final communique was just battery levels and light levels, but to us... 'my battery is low, and it's getting dark'.

Think i'd have rather you actually used the "raw science data" rather then the creative license that was posted on Twitter for it's last communication and whatever 'translation' spell Starlight cast make it the more poetic form. Think that would've set things up in a more satisfying manner. Overall though interesting start to a story and looks like this could be pretty interesting.

I'm not crying, you're crying!

Curiosity has been successfully rebooted and is exploring Mars once again. Still won't diminish my enjoyment of this story.


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