NASA Successfully Lands Curiosity Rover On Mars’ Surface

August 6th, 2012 at 5:53 pm
 


The exciting exploration of Mars is once again underway. NASA has just successfully landed its Curiosity rover on the surface of the red planet, commencing a $2.5 billion mission. The event was unprecedented in that it was a first time for the NASA scientists to try a new method of landing the rover into the surface of Mars.

NASA has confirmed the touchdown coming from the Curiosity rover to have occurred at 10:32pm PDT (GMT-7; 1:32 a.m. EDT Monday). The one-ton nuclear powered rover was lowered into the surface of Mars slowly using a 25 foot long bridle that is suspended from the inside of a rocket powered flying crane. The landing method was an innovative approach to safely landing the rover. Since it was untested, the entire even had the NASA scientists standing in suspended excitement and concern up until the Curiosity rover radioed its confirmed touchdown on the Mars surface.

Now that the Curiosity rover is safely on the Mars surface, work has begun in checking the rover’s complex systems and testing out its state-of-the-art instruments that will be used for its study of the Mars surface. It will then be tasked to study the planet’s geological surface¬† to look for signs of habitability such as searching for carbon compounds, which are considered as the building blocks of life here on Earth. This event is considered as an amazing achievement that would help answer some of the lingering questions about the red planet and whether it may be able to sustain human life in the future.

Image Source: NASA via CNet

 

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