Curiosity Has Landed!

Yesterday, at precisely 10:23 pm Greenwich Mean Time, NASA announced the successful landing of the Mars Curiosity Rover! After blazing through Mars’ atmosphere at over 21,000 km/h, Curiosity’s unique landing system deployed and brought the rover in for a nice, controlled landing.

Needless to say, pandemonium ensued at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab, where the landing was being monitored. All those on hand began jumping, hooting, hollering and hugging each other, much as they used to do whenever a successful launch was made or men touched down on the moon. Times may have changed, but the basic goal remains the same: to conquer the unknown and take the next big leap. And when that happens, you can expect the people who work so hard to make that happen to get a little giddy 😉

In addition, the HiRISE team (High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment), caught this beautiful and perfectly-timed photo from the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO). The photo shows Curiosity at left deploying its chute and descending to the surface.

Immediately after touching down, Curiosity began sending photos back to NASA of Mars surface. The first two were of its landing zone in Mars’ Gale Crater, shown here:

To mark this momentous occasion, President Obama had this statement to make:

“Tonight, on the planet Mars, the United States of America made history.

The successful landing of Curiosity – the most sophisticated roving laboratory ever to land on another planet – marks an unprecedented feat of technology that will stand as a point of national pride far into the future. It proves that even the longest of odds are no match for our unique blend of ingenuity and determination.

Tonight’s success, delivered by NASA, parallels our major steps forward towards a vision for a new partnership with American companies to send American astronauts into space on American spacecraft. That partnership will save taxpayer dollars while allowing NASA to do what it has always done best – push the very boundaries of human knowledge. And tonight’s success reminds us that our preeminence – not just in space, but here on Earth – depends on continuing to invest wisely in the innovation, technology, and basic research that has always made our economy the envy of the world.

I congratulate and thank all the men and women of NASA who made this remarkable accomplishment a reality – and I eagerly await what Curiosity has yet to discover.”

Yes, this is certainly is history in the making. Needless to say, Curiosity is expected send back some interesting finds as it wanders the Martian surface, takes soil samples, and scans them to determine what secrets and mysteries the surface holds. In time, all this information could become intrinsic to settlement and terraforming, the creation of human civilization on a planet other than Earth! Exciting times we live in!

In the meantime, check out this compilation video of the landing paired with footage take from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab:

Via: Universe Today

15 thoughts on “Curiosity Has Landed!

      1. Keep in mind that the Mars colony will be established with state-of-the-art technology to ensure maximum self-sufficiency. And really, there’s no reason to assume they will ever be totally cut off, that was just my attempt at being cheeky. No one can say that this will ensure our survival, but its a step in that direction.

      2. i think the best way to ensure survival is to first solve problems at home before going into space. but i guess that makes me an alien, because other earthlings just look at me and say, “What?!”

      3. no human! we must settle our problems on earth first before we move to other worlds. otherwise, our problems will follow us to our new homes.
        believe this wise demon, I know.

      4. Earth is a gift, and it is a home humanity is renting; how can it be the problem? and if you do poke a religious artifact in my face, be prepared to possibly lose whatever hand you’re poking with.

      5. I mean, its currently burdened by seemingly insurmountable problems of overpopulation, under-development, and pollution. They are compounded by each other, and without serious intervention might not be solvable with the means and resources we have here. Starting out fresh may be the only way to solve them, by shifting our resource industries and manufacturing off world while also looking for new colonies to send all the extra bodies.

      6. or someone with more power than any human can possibly hope to have will pull out something to fix the problems. however, that “something” is rarely nice and pretty, so better hope humanity fixes the problems before someone higher on the food chain has to!

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