NASA Lands Car-Size Rover Beside Martian Mountain | Aero-News Network
Aero-News Network
RSS icon RSS feed
podcast icon MP3 podcast
Subscribe Aero-News e-mail Newsletter Subscribe

Airborne Unlimited -- Recent Daily Episodes

Episode Date

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

Airborne On ANN

Airborne 07.20.15

Airborne 07.21.15

Airborne 07.22.15

Airborne 07.23.15

Airborne 07.24.15

Airborne Hi-Def On YouTube

Airborne 07.20.15

Airborne 07.21.15

Airborne 07.22.15

Airborne 07.23.15

Airborne 07.24.15

EAA/ANN AirVenture Innovation Preview

AIP-#1 Vimeo

AIP-#2 Vimeo

AIP-Part 1 YouTube

AIP-Part 2 YouTube

Mon, Aug 06, 2012

NASA Lands Car-Size Rover Beside Martian Mountain

Touchdown Came At About 0132 EDT Monday

The Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) spacecraft that carried Curiosity succeeded in every step of the most complex landing ever attempted on Mars, including the final severing of the bridle cords and flyaway maneuver of the rocket backpack.

"Today, the wheels of Curiosity have begun to blaze the trail for human footprints on Mars. Curiosity, the most sophisticated rover ever built, is now on the surface of the Red Planet, where it will seek to answer age-old questions about whether life ever existed on Mars -- or if the planet can sustain life in the future," said NASA Administrator Charles Bolden. "This is an amazing achievement, made possible by a team of scientists and engineers from around the world and led by the extraordinary men and women of NASA and our Jet Propulsion Laboratory. President Obama has laid out a bold vision for sending humans to Mars in the mid-2030's, and today's landing marks a significant step toward achieving this goal."

Curiosity landed at 2232Aug. 5, PDT, (0132 EDT Aug. 6) near the foot of a mountain three miles tall and 96 miles in diameter inside Gale Crater. During a nearly two-year prime mission, the rover will investigate whether the region ever offered conditions favorable for microbial life.

"The Seven Minutes of Terror has turned into the Seven Minutes of Triumph," said NASA Associate Administrator for Science John Grunsfeld. "My immense joy in the success of this mission is matched only by overwhelming pride I feel for the women and men of the mission's team." Curiosity returned its first view of Mars, a wide-angle scene of rocky ground near the front of the rover. More images are anticipated in the next several days as the mission blends observations of the landing site with activities to configure the rover for work and check the performance of its instruments and mechanisms. "Our Curiosity is talking to us from the surface of Mars," said MSL Project Manager Peter Theisinger of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, CA. "The landing takes us past the most hazardous moments for this project, and begins a new and exciting mission to pursue its scientific objectives."

Confirmation of Curiosity's successful landing came in communications relayed by NASA's Mars Odyssey orbiter and received by the Canberra, Australia, antenna station of NASA's Deep Space Network.

Curiosity carries 10 science instruments with a total mass 15 times as large as the science payloads on the Mars rovers Spirit and Opportunity. Some of the tools are the first of their kind on Mars, such as a laser-firing instrument for checking elemental composition of rocks from a distance. The rover will use a drill and scoop at the end of its robotic arm to gather soil and powdered samples of rock interiors, then sieve and parcel out these samples into analytical laboratory instruments inside the rover.

To handle this science toolkit, Curiosity is twice as long and five times as heavy as Spirit or Opportunity. The Gale Crater landing site places the rover within driving distance of layers of the crater's interior mountain. Observations from orbit have identified clay and sulfate minerals in the lower layers, indicating a wet history.

The mission is managed by JPL for NASA's Science Mission Directorate in Washington. The rover was designed, developed and assembled at JPL. JPL is a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena.

(NASA Images, Top: Artist's rendering of the Curiosity rover. Bottom: First image captured by rover on Mars.)

FMI: www.nasa.gov/mars

Advertisement

More News

AeroSports Update: Medical Rules For Pilots Without Medicals

Sport Pilots And Glider Pilots Flying Without Medicals Must Comply With Fit-For-Flight Rules In a letter sent to all U.S. Senators, the Airline Pilots Association’s (ALPA) pr>[...]

ANN's Daily Aero-Linx (07.29.15)

Homebuilt Homepage The Homebuilt Homepage is an index and reference on Homebuilt Experimental class aircraft and related information. This is a non-profit website.>[...]

ANN's Daily Aero-Term (07.29.15): Expect Departure Clearance Time

The time issued to a flight to indicate when it can expect to receive departure clearance. EDCTs are issued as part of Traffic Management Programs, such as a Ground Delay Program (>[...]

Aero-News: Quote Of The Day (07.29.15)

“The avionics repair shop industry in the U.S. has only 53 months remaining to equip the entire general aviation fleet of more than 100,000 aircraft with ADS-B Out equipment.>[...]

ANN FAQ: Getting The Word Out

Things To Know When You Send A News Release Aero-News gets hundreds of releases every week, ranging from industry giants like Boeing and Cessna to the smallest of flying clubs and >[...]

blog comments powered by Disqus



Advertisement

Advertisement

Podcasts

Advertisement

© 2007 - 2015 Web Development & Design by Pauli Systems, LC