Red Rover, Red Rover
Before we send humans to new worlds, we’re sending robots first.
Currently, there are two rovers exploring the surface of Mars, Opportunity and Curiosity. They’re both responsible for uncovering scientific data from the red planet that help us better understand the surface of Mars – what was once there and what to expect when we get there?
Opportunity, launched in 2003, is uncovering what was once on Mars and searching for evidence of water by examining rocks found on the surface.
Curiosity, launched in 2011, followed in the footsteps of Opportunity by searching for clues to the red planet’s past. But this mobile lab has more sophisticated equipment and an array of high-definition cameras. We’re seeing images of the surface of Mars we’ve never seen before. Curiosity, with a social media personality of its own, is capturing the attention of folks back here on Earth with robotic Martian selfies posted to Twitter.
There’s a whole slew of new probes heading to Mars, and other destinations of our Solar System, that will help get humans to new worlds.
Emilee Speck writes for Orlando Sentinel’s ‘Go For Launch’ blog about these probes and rovers, and she joins me to bring us up-to-speed on what’s happening in space.
Listen to the next episode: BUILDING A DEEP SPACE CAPSULE