Curiosity Celebrates One Year On Mars

Happy anniversary, little guy!

1. On June 24 the Curiosity rover celebrated its first Martian year on the planet — 687 Earth days, to be exact.

NASA/JPL

Here it is using a camera at the end of its arm to snap a self-portrait in front of its latest drilling site, a mystical place called Windjana.

2. Since its launch, its mission was to find a habitable environment — and it did!

Which is just as exciting as the rover landing.

3. So far Curiosity has traveled about eight kilometers.

NASA/JPL

It’s currently busy driving on a road trip to the base of Mount Sharp, a mountain on Mars.

4. The rover first drilled into a lakebed and found ingredients and conditions that could support microbial life.

Nasa / Reuters

That is, if life ever existed. Here’s the first sample of powdered rock drilled last February, which is basically filled with space Pixy Stix.

5. Curiosity can even feed itself rock powder for its own internal analytical laboratories.

Scientists hope to compare the samples from the various sites to determine the interaction between rock and where water formally flowed — and hopefully gain more insight into the environment of early Mars.

6. But the trek hasn’t been without some literal bumps.

 

The terrain has taken a bigger toll on the rover’s wheels, which the scientists are trying to understand and remedy with replicas back on Earth. That’s led to some detours to avoid further problems.

7. Watch the full update below!

Happy one-year anniversary, bud!

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