Holy shit it's a smiley face.
This is a high-definition video (created using photographs) of the Mars rover Curiosity landing on the red planet. That's not it in the picture though, that's just the heat-shield being jettisoned. "The sign clearly said 'NO DUMPING'" I imagine a Martian thinking to itself before pushing the button that melts earth with a powerful laser-beam.
Though they can't be seen in the video, the rover gets lowered down on 25-foot-long cables for its "sky crane" maneuver near the end. Just before hitting the Martian soil, the engines kick up a huge amount of dust and pebbles, which obscures the ground and may be responsible for damaging one of Curiosity's wind sensors. The soft landing went off with pitch-perfect precision and was a big victory for NASA engineers.
I still can't believe we're advanced enough as a race to successfully land things on other planets with such precision. I guess I just don't have any contact with the smart people. No lie, most people around here don't even know what half the road signs mean. "Okay now the upside down triangle -- that means try to put on makeup and drive, right?"
Hit the jump and get your outerspace face on.
Thanks to Terrence, Doombah and Rick, all volunteered to be shot to Mars wearing nothing but a track-suit and helmet cam.
/ Continue →
/ Continue →
Maybe We Haven't Given Up On Space After All: NASA's Curiosity Rover Successfully Touches Down On MarsLaunched in November of 2011, last night NASA's rover Curiosity successfully landed on Mars, ready to begin its two year mission to determine whether the red planet was ever capable of supporting life. Thankfully, everything went according to plan and didn't end as just anothe... / Continue →