Three Years on Mars – Curiosity Rover Report

Hi I’m Ashwin Vasavada, project scientist for the Mars Science Laboratory mission and this is your special edition, 3rd Anniversary Curiosity Rover Report. It’s a summer of milestones for Mars Exploration. Fifty years ago, Mariner 4 became the first spacecraft to take close-up pictures of Mars. Thirty-nine years ago, the Viking 1 Lander became the […]

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NASA’s Curiosity Rover Inspects Unusual Bedrock

Approaching the third anniversary of its landing on Mars, NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover has found a target unlike anything it has studied before — bedrock with surprisingly high levels of silica. Silica is a rock-forming compound containing silicon and oxygen, commonly found on Earth as quartz. A rock outcrop dubbed “Missoula,” near Marias Pass on […]

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Mars Rover’s Laser-Zapping Instrument Gets Sharper Vision

Tests on Mars have confirmed success of a repair to the autonomous focusing capability of the Chemistry and Camera (ChemCam) instrument on NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover. This instrument provides information about the chemical composition of targets by zapping them with laser pulses and taking spectrometer readings of the induced sparks. It also takes detailed images […]

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