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> posted by   on August 14th 2012
 

Hello, anybody there?

We all saw the NASA scientists’ faces burst with enthousiam at the Jet propulsion laboratory in Pasadena, California when Curiosity’s rover touched down Mars at 7.14am (CET) on Monday, August 6, 2012.

The car-sized rover (900kg) landed as designed in the Gale in Mars’s southern hemisphere.

The equipment has travelled 350m miles since its launch from Cape Canaveral, Florida, in November 2011. After an apparently perfect entry and descent dubbed the “seven minutes of terror”, the NASA staff burst into already legendary applause.

Curiosity is the largest and most sophisticated rover NASA has ever sent to another planet. Powered by radioactive plutonium and lithium-ion batteries, the rover will now explore the Gale crater and Mount Sharp for one Martian year, or 687 Earth days. It will climb up the shallow sides of the mountain, following a path drawn up from maps created using images taken by Mars orbiteers.

The entire project – a two-year mission to search for evidence that Mars once hosted the ingredients of life – cost approx. 2.5 milliard dollars.

Amazing how a delicate construction with so many wires and robotic technology will do this job. Maybe in the near future we can find a glimpse of this high tech in hospitals or within our cars?

Meanwhile, I’m enjoying a summer night sky with special attention for the “red star”, knowing that up there a little NASA rover is doing its job.

Watch NASA movies at Guardian website

Above: Reuters

Above: www.ria.ru

Above: New Scientist

Above: NASA

Above: 2 x NASA

Above: NASA

 

 

 
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