Beagle 3 (also called Beagle 2: Evolution) is a proposed Mars lander mission to search for life on Mars, past or present. Beagle 3 is the proposed successor to the British Beagle 2 Mars lander, which landed successfully on 25 December 2003, but failed to fully deploy all of its solar panels and communications antenna. Beagle 3 was promoted by Professor Colin Pillinger, lead scientist on the Beagle 2. EADS Astrium also played a part in funding and early development of the project. Pillinger dreamed of launching up to two landing craft from an orbiter in 2009 as part of the European Space Agency's Aurora Programme. The putative Beagle 3 would be named after the ship HMS Beagle that took Charles Darwin around the world.
After the Beagle 3 project was rejected by ESA in 2004, Pillinger proposed to the American space agency (NASA) to hitch a ride on the Mars Science Laboratory Mars lander, but the proposal was not accepted.
Colin Pillinger died in 2014 not knowing that the Beagle 2 mission had in fact landed correctly on Mars.