US space agency NASA is planning to start a campaign to restore communication with the Mars rover Opportunity.

In a recent statement, according to media reports, NASA said it would begin a 45-day campaign of active efforts to restore communications with Opportunity once skies above the rover cleared to a sufficient level.

Mars rover Opportunity has been out of contact since early June, ever since a major dust storm deprived it of solar power. The storm is learnt to be fading now.

“The dust haze produced by the Martian global dust storm of 2018 is one of the most extensive on record, but all indications are it is finally coming to a close,” said Rich Zurek, project scientist for the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter.

Zurek said in the statement there had been no signs of dust storms within 3,000 km of Opportunity “for some time” now.

“…assuming that we hear back from Opportunity, we will begin the process of discerning its status and bringing it back online,” John Callas, Opportunity project manager at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, said in a statement.

Concerns were however raised as many said Opportunity not responding to communications attempts after these 45 days would mean end of the mission for the spacecraft.

Thomas Zurbuchen, NASA associate administrator for science, however, allayed such fears.

“Even if no signal is received from the Opportunity rover after the initial 45 days of recovery efforts, @NASA will not just cancel, but will instead review the situation. I will seek input from the @Marsrovers’ mission team at each step along the way to get #OppyPhoneHome,” tweeted Zurbuchen.