America’s unmanned probe Curiosity landed on Mars August 5. The level of technology used to accomplish this feat is well worth pondering. Curiosity landed in a large impact crater, at the foot of a 3 mile high mountain named Gale. The 96 mile wide crater was chosen as a landing spot because its deep depression protected it from Martian wind storms. Scientists believed it was their best chance to explore layers of Martian sediment. Curiosity’s journey from Earth took over 8 months. At 150 metres a day, it could take up to a year for it to reach Mount Gale. As it travels along the Martian landscape, one task it will have is using its “ChemCam” , essentially a laser aimed at rocks, vaporizing small portions to analyse. Maybe we can finally answer the question – was there life on Mars?
This link is to Nasa Science, the photo is taken from their web site, and is of the Gale Crater.