This week in space: special post, Curiosity rover

First let me apologize for not having done a This week in space in sometime, I've just been lazy.


November 26th, 2011 Mars Science Laboratory left the confines of Earth and began it's journey to Mars. The Mars Science Laboratory successfully landed Curiosity, a Mars rover, in Gale Crater on August 6, 2012 at 05:14:39 UTC.

In the above photo The Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) team in the MSL Mission Support Area react after learning the the Curiosity rove has landed safely on Mars and images start coming in at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

Early Monday morning, August 5th EDT, first image taken by NASA's Curiosity rover, it was taken through a "fisheye" wide-angle lens on one of the rover's front left Hazard-Avoidance cameras at one-quarter of full resolution. The clear dust cover on the camera is still on in this view, and dust can be seen around its edge, along with three cover fasteners. The rover's shadow is visible in the foreground.

Interestingly NASA's Curiosity rover and its parachute were spotted by NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter as Curiosity descended to the surface on Aug. 5 PDT (Aug. 6 EDT). The High-Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera captured this image of Curiosity while the orbiter was listening to transmissions from the rover.


Check out the official mission project here and follow it on Twitter here. In the days to come color images should begin being taken as well as scientific data being reported as instrumentation turns on and gets to work. I've been awaiting Curiosity's landing on Mars since learning of it's proposal in late 2004. I slept very little last night too excited and worried that there would be some error causing the mission to fail. Now to be patient and await images and information in the coming months and even years.