Tonight, Curiosity reached its destination: Gale Crater, Mars.
Curiosity's first image taken from the surface of Mars. Woo-hoo! (Image credit: NASA)
Curiosity, also known as the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL), traveled for about 352 million miles (567 million km) from a cleanroom at JPL on Earth to a place called Mount Sharp in Gale Crater on Mars. It’s hard to imagine traveling so far.
Curiosity's cleanroom, way back in 2010.
Mount Sharp, the area on Mars Curiosity will explore. (Image credit: NASA)
Tonight, August 5, Curiosity’s team worked through the “Seven Minutes of Terror” while everyone else, including myself, just hoped and wished for the best.
Can you even imagine how hard it would be to land a rover? Can you imagine just how nervous you’d be that all the work put into Curiosity would either have the chance to succeed amazingly or just fail terribly? I can’t, but that’s what Curiosity’s team must have felt.
Landing Curiosity had several stages. (Image credit: NASA)
Finally, can you imagine the relief and excitement as Curiosity landed safely on solid ground? I can, but not even half as much as Curiosity’s team, I’m sure.
I’m so, so glad Curiosity made the landing safely. Congratulations, Curiosity! You ROCK!