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New Probe to Rendezvous with Mars

If all goes well, a powerful new space probe will arrive Friday to Mars. As the name suggests, the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter will not land on the surface.

It's designed to view the entire planet from an altitude of about 200 miles.

But first it has to arrive safely, and that's been no easy feat for past Mars missions.

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Award-winning journalist Richard Harris has reported on a wide range of topics in science, medicine and the environment since he joined NPR in 1986. In early 2014, his focus shifted from an emphasis on climate change and the environment to biomedical research.