1. Big bucks
The UK Space Agency said it will spend a little over $15 million for the development of instruments to search for signs of past or present life on Mars. The instruments are part of the scientific payload on the ExoMars rover to be launched in 2018 as part of a joint mission between the European Space Agency and NASA. The ExoMars rover is a robotic scientist which will search for evidence of past and present life and study the local Martian environment to understand when and where conditions that could have supported the development of life may have prevailed.