By Kalwinder Kaur
The advanced Mars rover, Curiosity, safely landed on the Red Planet. Weighing 1-T, this rover was suspended from rocket backpack through ropes. Following a 36-week long flight, it landed on Mars, initiating two-year investigation.
Mass Rover Curiosity
Curiosity was carried by the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) spacecraft. Every step taken for landing on Mars, especially the ultimate severing of the bridle cords followed by the rocket backpack’s flyaway maneuver was proven successful.
Curiosity made its successful landing close to the foot of a mountain with Gale Crater measuring 3-mi in length and 96 mi in diameter. It landed on Aug. 5, at 10:32 p.m. PDT. While on a two-year prime mission, the rover will discover the potential conditions in that region favoring microbial life.
Curiosity has captured the first view of Mars, a wide panorama of rocky ground, anterior to the rover. However, further images will be captured in a few days. The mission includes observations, programming, and analysis of rover performance with respect to its landing site.
Curiosity's successful landing was received via communications transmitted by NASA's Mars Odyssey orbiter.
Curiosity is loaded with 10 massive science instruments including the unique laser-firing instrument for long-distant monitoring elemental composition of rocks. By adopting a drill and scoop at the end of its robotic arm, the rover will collect powdered samples of rock interiors and soil, followed by sieving and packing the samples into its analytical laboratory instruments.
Curiosity is 2x longer and 5x heavier than Spirit or Opportunity. The rover is positioned within driving distance of layers of the crater's interior mountain by the Gale Crater landing site. Observations from orbit have led to the detection of clay and sulfate minerals within the lower layers, representing a wet history.
JPL for NASA's Science Mission Directorate in Washington, where the rover was designed, directs this mission.