Monday, August 05, 2013

Curiosity: One Year on Mars

On August 5, 2012, Curiosity, a rover the size of a small SUV, touched down on the Martian surface.  A year later the craft is still performing flawlessly.  

NASA continues to champion the possibility of life existing on Mars, at some point in it's history. Curiosity does not search for life directly but if microbes ever existed on Mars, then there is  hope for discovering the chemical ingredients that are fundamental to all living things.

Curiosity's main destination is Mount Sharp. Once there Curiosity will unpack its toolkit  to hunt for the organic building blocks of life.

Now after many fits and false starts, as Curiosity was constantly exploring targets nearby, the rover is once again pointed at Mount Sharp and controllers promises to keep side trips to a minimum.

Curiosity has proven to be such a popular mission that NASA is preparing for an encore performance in 2021 using the same landing technology. Budget willing, the next rover will be able to collect rocks and store them on the Martian surface for a possible future mission to pick up and ferry back to Earth.


Dave Tackett said...

Paul, you're posting already? Hope your feeling much better, man.

Beam Me Up said...

Yes Dave, am posting as often as I can. I am sitting up and moving around. But have yet to stand due to the injury. Thanks for the interest!