NASA's Newest Mars Rover Goes King Size

February 18, 2010

Spirit and Opportunity,  NASA's first two Mars rovers, exceeded everyone's expectations. They lasted far longer and collected much more data than anyone had anticipated - NASA included. Now they've taken the wraps off their next Mars-cruising machine, and they're going big this time around.

Whereas the other two rovers' sizes fell somewhere between an RC car and a Power Wheels, the new rover, dubbed "Curiosity" will be closer to the size of a sub-compact car, and weighs in at nearly a ton.

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As the video illustrates, the rover will be housed in a pod-like vehicle, and will make a powered descent into the atmosphere, eventually separating from the pod on the ground and then going about its data-collecting business. If all goes according to NASA's plan, the Curiosity should be touching down on Martian soil in 2013.

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Source: BBC

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