… or should I say we attack Mars? Haha!
Thanks to some Facebook friends, I learned that NASA’s rover, Curiosity, landed on Mars a few minutes ago! Been going around the interwebs looking for news ever since. This video gave me gooooosiiiiieeeees:
I didn’t even know they launched one into space! And it took 8 months for it to get there? Amazing!
Fox News’ article has got to be the best one so far. Very descriptive. Here are a few excerpts:
It was NASA’s seventh landing on Earth’s neighbor; many other attempts by the U.S. and other countries to zip past, circle or set down on Mars have gone awry.
The voyage to Mars took more than eight months and spanned 352 million miles. The trickiest part of the journey? The landing. Because Curiosity weighs nearly a ton, engineers drummed up a new and more controlled way to set the rover down. The last Mars rovers, twins Spirit and Opportunity, were cocooned in air bags and bounced to a stop in 2004.
The plans for Curiosity called for a series of braking tricks, similar to those used by the space shuttle, and a supersonic parachute to slow it down. Next: Ditch the heat shield used for the fiery descent.
And in a new twist, engineers came up with a way to lower the rover by cable from a hovering rocket-powered backpack. At touchdown, the cords cut and the rocket stage crashed a distance away.
Over the next two years, Curiosity will drive over to a mountain rising from the crater floor, poke into rocks and scoop up rust-tinted soil to see if the region ever had the right environment for microscopic organisms to thrive. It’s the latest chapter in the long-running quest to find out whether primitive life arose early in the planet’s history.
Despite Mars’ reputation as a spacecraft graveyard, humans continue their love affair with the planet, lobbing spacecraft in search of clues about its early history. Out of more than three dozen attempts — flybys, orbiters and landings — by the U.S., Soviet Union, Europe and Japan since the 1960s, more than half have ended disastrously.
One NASA rover that defied expectations is Opportunity, which is still busy wheeling around the rim of a crater in the Martian southern hemisphere eight years later.
Too much awesome sauce! Is it too late to apply to become an astronaut? If I become one, I shall rename my blog Outerspace Wanderer! 😀
This event calls for a Carly Rae Jepsen song. (No, not Call Me Maybe.)
“Hey, I just met you, and this is crazy… but I’m a rover, can I scope you maybe?” LOL.
“Curiosity” – Carly Rae Jepsen