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Curiosity

  1. NASA Offers Up $20,000 If You Can Think of a Use for 660 Pounds of Dead Weight on Mars Lander

    It's a major award!

    The ballast on NASA's Mars Science Laboratory entry-descent-landing (MEDLI) system is very important for science in that, without it, the spacecraft wouldn't be able to put robots and other heavy objects safely on the surface of another planet. However, it's not actually very useful to science in that it's a bunch of extra weight on a spacecraft that could be better used for scientific equipment. That's where you and your brilliant idea come in.

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  2. NASA’s MAVEN Is Now in Orbit Around Mars to Study Its Atmosphere and Climate Change

    Your carbon footprint is off the hook for this one.

    Studying Earth's climate has grown too contentious, so NASA's brilliant scientists sent a satellite to orbit Mars and study its less politically divisive atmosphere. Or they just really want to learn more about how Mars works, since they're getting kind of tired of just sending robots there and sending people is dangerous.

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  3. Neil deGrasse Tyson and Felicia Day Narrate a Video About the Mars Curiosity Rover

    More space videos narrated by these two please.

    Need some inspiration for why it's worth doing things like landing SUV-sized robots on other planets? Watch this video about the Mars Curiosity rover from Caltech. It's narrated by Neil deGrasse Tyson and Felicia Day, and it tells what we really sent to Mars—our curiosity.

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  4. Could Plants Grow on Mars? Proposed Mission Wants to Find Out

    "Bring me a shrubbery!" —Mars Curiosity Rover... probably.

    Just because no life has been found on Mars, doesn't mean life couldn't survive there—right? That's the thought behind a proposed mission that would attempt to grow a plant on the Martian surface when the next rover lands there in 2021. Besides sprucing up the place, this could pave the way for long-term settlements.

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  5. LEGO’s Mars Curiosity Rover Set Is Now Available, but It’s Already out of Stock

    Please make a Bobak Ferdowsi minifig to go with this.

    The LEGO Mars Curiosity Rover set is finally available for sale, or was, briefly, before it sold out. We haven't seen any on eBay yet either, but when they do appear, they'll probably be somewhere between the $29.99 LEGO price, and the $2.5 billion price of the actual Curiosity mission.

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  6. It’s Raining Mars – Hallelujah! But Seriously, Bits Of Mars Are Falling to Earth As Meteorites

    We're all really sorry for that terrible headline.

    It's been speculated for decades that little bits of Mars have been raining down on the Earth, but Mars rover Curiosity has finally proven it: we're basically being aggressively assaulted by the red planet, and Martian rocks are just about everywhere.

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  7. Curiosity Has Found Water Bound Up in the Soil of Mars

    We want to go to Mars and give Curiosity a high five.

    The Curiosity rover has found water on Mars, or rather in Mars. The rover analyzed a soil sample and found it to be made up of about two percent water. It's not exactly an ocean, but it's significant. Curiosity was sent to Mars to find out if the planet could have once supported life, and water is a big component in that.

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  8. Curiosity Rover Basically Gets Its Learner’s Permit, Drives Itself With New Autonomous Navigation System

    No one likes a backseat driver. Not even robots on Mars.

    The Curiosity Rover tried out a new feature yesterday when it successfully tested out an automatic navigation system that let it decide for itself how to safely drive on Mars. Curiosity doesn't seem old enough to drive, but I guess it's ruled by Martian law at this point.

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  9. Rover Watches Mars’ Moons Pass One Another In The Night For First Time Ever [Video]

    Man, I wish we had two moons...

    Today, NASA demonstrated just how neat it would be if the Earth had two moons. This video, stitched together from numerous stills captured by the Mars Curiosity rover's Mast camera, offer the first look at Mars' larger moon, Phobos, passing in front of and blotting out the planet's smaller moon, Deimos.

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  10. New Study Suggests Snowfall on Mars

    Snowsuits that the little green men might have worn as of yet unconfirmed.

    While scientists are now certain that there was once water on Mars, there are still many questions about what that means. Questions linger over how much water there was, what form it may have taken, and what role it had in the Martian ecosystem. Researchers at Brown University have been studying some of these questions, and have found evidence to support the theory that the water regularly precipitated on Mars, suggesting a history of snowy seasons on the Red Planet.

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