Mars Rover Curiosity: new milestone achieved - Contents of life

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Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Mars Rover Curiosity: new milestone achieved

                                         Artist view of Mar rover Curiosity on Mars. Picture taken from :
                                    (http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/msl/building_curiosity.html)

Every body is aware of Mars rover Curiosity by now.
Its a Car sized robotic rover which was launched from the surface of earth in November 2011 and landed on the surface of Mars after travelling  563,000,000 kms in a period of approx. 9 months. The location on Mars where the rover landed is known as Aeolis Palus in the Gale Crater.
It in itself is an achievement that the Scientists succeeded in landing an unmanned vehicle on a surface so far away from Earth.
It is expected that Mars rover Curiosity will successfully deliver its goals that revolve around gaining information related to the geological and climatic features of Mars, possibility for life sustaining environment and existence of water, to name a few.
You can read more about its design and constructions and other details related to  Curiosity at:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Curiosity_(rover)

Few days back Curiosity made a history by drilling a hole on a surface other than Earth. Though its first drill is not deep enough ( 2.5 inches deep and 0.63 inches wide), considering it being a first and test drill, it is a big step in human history.
Curiosity carried out some steps in previous weeks and then decided upon the place to make its first drill. The selected rock is called "John Klein". This rock is interesting to the Scientists as they believe this rock might hold the evidence of the extinct wet environment on the surface of Mars.
Curiosity uses a very sophisticated technology to suck in the the dust out of the drilled hole through the flute within the drill and stored in the chambers. This dust then undergoes different processes to remove any contamination, big size particles and then a very fine dust which is screened out and the particles in which are smaller than six thousandth of an inch is used further for analysis with its X-ray machine.
This is just a beginning. Curiosity is supposed to accomplish a lot more in coming days and enrich our knowledge about unearthly elements.
You can read more about this achievement here:
http://www.popsci.com/technology/article/2013-02/mars-rover-curiosity-first-robot-drill-another-planet
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