TWO hours before the Mars landing (Curiosity)
“PASADENA, Calif. (AP) — In a show of technological wizardry, the robotic explorer Curiosity blazed through the pink skies of Mars, steering itself to a gentle landing inside a giant crater for the most ambitious dig yet into the red planet’s past.
A chorus of cheers and applause echoed through the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory on Sunday night after the most high-tech interplanetary rover ever built signaled it had survived a harrowing plunge through the thin Mars atmosphere.
“The landing site near Mars’ equator was picked because there are signs of past water everywhere, meeting one of the requirements for life as we know it. Inside Gale Crater is a 3-mile-high mountain, and images from space show the base appears rich in minerals that formed in the presence of water.”
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The shadow of the rover Curiosity on the surface of Mars, in an image sent back from the planet and posted on NASA's twitter feed.
Nick Lam, data controller, monitoring the Mars rover Curiosity from the Deep Space Network's control room at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif.
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All photos courtesy of JPL and NASA.
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