Next Mars rover stretches robotic arm

September 6, 2010
Spacecraft technicians at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., conduct a test of the robotic arm on Mars rover Curiosity. Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

( -- Curiosity, the Mars Science Laboratory rover that will be on Mars two years from now, has been flexing the robotic arm that spacecraft workers at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory attached to the rover body in August 2010.

The arm will be crucial for putting samples of or powdered rock into analytical instruments inside the rover. A camera and to be installed at the end of the arm will also examine rocks and soils in place.

The Mars Science Laboratory will launch from Florida in November or December 2011 and land in August 2012 at one of the most intriguing sites on Mars. The landing site is still to be chosen from four finalists. Once on Mars, Curiosity will study whether the landing region has ever had environmental conditions favorable for life and favorable for preserving evidence of life if it existed.

This video is not supported by your browser at this time.

Explore further: Rocky Mesas of Nilosyrtis Mensae, Mars

More information: Learn more about Curiosity at

Related Stories

Rocky Mesas of Nilosyrtis Mensae, Mars

May 6, 2008

Mesas in the Nilosyrtis Mensae region of Mars appear in enhanced color in this image from the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO).

Mars Curiosity Takes First Baby Steps (w/ Video)

July 26, 2010

( -- Like proud parents, mission team members gathered in a gallery above a clean room at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory to watch the Mars Curiosity rover roll for the first time.

Recommended for you

How to prepare for Mars? NASA consults Navy sub force

October 5, 2015

As NASA contemplates a manned voyage to Mars and the effects missions deeper into space could have on astronauts, it's tapping research from another outfit with experience sending people to the deep: the U.S. Navy submarine ...

Researchers find a new way to weigh a star

October 5, 2015

Researchers from the University of Southampton have developed a new method for measuring the mass of pulsars – highly magnetised rotating neutron stars formed from the remains of massive stars after they explode into supernovae.

NASA selects investigations for future key planetary mission

October 1, 2015

NASA has selected five science investigations for refinement during the next year as a first step in choosing one or two missions for flight opportunities as early as 2020. Three of those chosen have ties to NASA's Jet Propulsion ...


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.