Caterpickles Central is abuzz with news that NASA has just launched the largest Mars Rover yet. The Curiosity, a one-ton, six-wheeled, one-armed robotic explorer, set off for Mars from Cape Canaveral this morning (with a targeted assist from an unmanned Atlas V rocket). Its trip to Mars will take 8 1/2 months. Once there, the Curiosity will use its arsenal of 10 scientific instruments to take samples from rocks and analyze them on the spot. The nuclear-powered rover will spend two years looking for evidence of life on Mars.
- Girl Who Named NASA’s Mars Rover Excited to Watch It Blast Off (space.com)
- NASA to Launch Huge Mars Rover Saturday (space.com)
- NASA launches super-size Mars rover to red planet (AP)