Curiosity News

NASA’s Curiosity Rover Discovers Organic Chemistry on Mars

December 17, 2014

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Rover Finds Active Ancient Organic Chemistry on Mars

Using the Tunable Laser Spectrometer instrument in Curiosity’s onboard Sample Analysis at Mars laboratory, astronomers have detected a tenfold spike in the abundance of methane in the Martian atmosphere. NASA’s Mars Curiosity rover has measured a tenfold spike in methane, an organic chemical, in the atmosphere around it and detected other organic molecules in a […]

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Curiosity Reveals Clues to How Water Helped Shape the Landscape of Mars

December 9, 2014

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How-Water-Helped-Shape-Martian-Landscape

New data from NASA’s Curiosity Rover indicate that Mount Sharp on Mars was built by sediments deposited in a large lake bed over tens of millions of years, suggesting ancient Mars maintained a climate that could have produced long-lasting lakes at many locations on the Red Planet. “If our hypothesis for Mount Sharp holds up, […]

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Martian Rock Provides Clues to Wet History

November 19, 2014

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Textures in Rock Provide Evidence about Wet Environmental Conditions on Ancient Mars

This close-up image of a Martian rock has provided scientists with evidence about wet environmental conditions in the ancient past on Mars. This close-up view of a target rock called “Last Chance” was acquired by the microscopic imager on the arm of NASA’s Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity on March 3, 2004, during the 39th Martian […]

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Curiosity Rover Provides First Confirmation of a Mineral Mapped from Orbit

November 5, 2014

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Curiosity Provides First Confirmation of a Mineral Mapped from Orbit

A sample of powdered rock extracted by the Curiosity rover’s drill from the “Confidence Hills” target has provided NASA scientists with the first confirmation of a mineral mapped from orbit. “This connects us with the mineral identifications from orbit, which can now help guide our investigations as we climb the slope and test hypotheses derived […]

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Curiosity Technology Adapted to Detect Gas Leaks from Pipelines

October 3, 2014

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Curiosity Technology Adapted to Detect Gas Leaks

Technology adapted from NASA’s Mars rover program is being used to develop a hand-held device that will help find and fix natural gas leaks from gas pipelines, with the goal of reducing emissions of greenhouse gases. In collaboration with NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) announced that it […]

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Curiosity Rover Drills First Sample From Mars Mountain

September 26, 2014

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Curiosity Rover Drills First Sample of Mars Mountain

NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover has collected its first drill sample from the base of Mount Sharp on Mars. NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover has collected its first taste of the layered mountain whose scientific allure drew the mission to choose this part of Mars as a landing site. Late Wednesday, September 24, the rover’s hammering drill […]

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NASA’s Curiosity Rover Arrives at Mount Sharp

September 12, 2014

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Curiosity Rover Arrives at Mount Sharp

After 2 years and roughly 9 kilometers of driving, NASA’s Mars Curiosity rover has arrived at the base of Mount Sharp to begin a new phase of exploration. NASA’s Mars Curiosity rover has reached the Red Planet’s Mount Sharp, a Mount-Rainier-size mountain at the center of the vast Gale Crater and the rover mission’s long-term […]

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New Curiosity Image from ‘Bonanza King’ Target

August 20, 2014

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Curiosity Image of Bonanza King Target

This newly released image from NASA’s Curiosity Rover shows a gray patch of rock material at the “Bonanza King” location. NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover used the Dust Removal Tool on its robotic arm to brush aside reddish, more-oxidized dust, revealing a gray patch of less-oxidized rock material at a target called “Bonanza King,” visible in […]

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Curiosity Rover Nears Mountain-Base Outcrop

August 4, 2014

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Curiosity Rover Nears Mountain Base Outcrop

NASA’s Mars Curiosity rover is approaching its first close look at bedrock that is part of Mount Sharp, approaching a geological unit that’s part of the base of the mountain rather than the floor of the crater. As it approaches the second anniversary of its landing on Mars, NASA’s Curiosity rover is also approaching its […]

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NASA’s Curiosity Rover Views Mercury Passing in Front of the Sun

June 11, 2014

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Curiosity Rover Views Mercury Passing in Front of the Sun

This new animated image from NASA’s Curiosity rover shows Mercury passing in front of the Sun. NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover has imaged the planet Mercury passing in front of the sun, visible as a faint darkening that moves across the face of the sun. This is the first transit of the sun by a planet […]

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Curiosity Image Captures Mysterious Bright Spot

April 9, 2014

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Curiosity Sees Mysterious Bright Spot

A newly released Curiosity image shows a bright spot on the surface of Mars, which was possibly caused by the sun glinting off a rock or cosmic rays striking the camera’s detector. Images taken by NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover on April 2 and April 3 include bright spots, which might be due to the sun […]

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Curiosity Rover Drives Through and Past “Dingo Gap” Inside Gale Crater

February 12, 2014

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Curiosity Rover Crosses Martian Dune

This new series of images shows NASA’s Curiosity Rover driving through and past “Dingo Gap” inside Gale Crater. NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover is continuing its traverse toward enticing science destinations after climbing over a dune spanning a gap in a ridge. The rover covered 135 feet (41.1 meters) on February 9, in its first drive […]

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Study Shows Ancient Fresh Water Lake on Mars Could Have Sustained Life

December 9, 2013

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Curiosity Finds Evidence of An Ancient Freshwater Lake on Mars

Newly published research shows that an ancient lake on Mars had fresh water and contained key biological elements such as carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen and sulphur, which would have provided perfect conditions for simple microbial life such as chemolithoautotrophs to thrive in. A team of researchers from NASA’s Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) Curiosity rover mission, […]

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NASA’s Curiosity Finds Water Molecules on Mars

September 27, 2013

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Curiosity Finds Water Molecules on Mars

Analysis of the Martian soil samples taken by NASA’s Curiosity rover has reveal that water molecules are bound to fine-grained soil particles, accounting for about 2 percent of the particles’ weight at Gale Crater where Curiosity landed. Pasadena, California — NASA’s Curiosity rover is revealing a great deal about Mars, from long-ago processes in its […]

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Curiosity Fails to Detect Methane on Mars

September 20, 2013

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Curiosity Detects No Methane on Mars

To the surprise of many researchers, NASA’s Curiosity rover has failed to detect methane on Mars. Pasadena, California — Data from NASA’s Curiosity rover has revealed the Martian environment lacks methane. This is a surprise to researchers because previous data reported by U.S. and international scientists indicated positive detections. The roving laboratory performed extensive tests […]

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