Surprising things about the Mars rover
- •Curiosity did not land with an airbagUnlike the rovers before her, Curiosity was gently placed on the ground by the "Skycrane." Previous rovers used an airbag and bounced a few times before it landed.
- •The rover is fairly autonomousMost people think you can drive the rover with a.joy stick. There is about a 20 min round trip seat to communicate with Mars. The rover gets instructions and then figures out what to do best it can.
- •Lots of names/signatures went up with CuriosityDuring construction, guests who went to see the progress were invited to sign their name. Those names were scanned and sent along with the rover.
- •A bear stowed away on the rover.Ok - not really. One day a bear wandered onto the center and made the news. Shortly after someone started a Twitter account for the bear claiming his intent and plans to be the first bear on Mars.
- •During the flight to Mars the rover mostly stayed still and Mars came to itOrbital mechanics is hard. The rover had to travel a relative distance of about 1 million miles per day. However most of the distance traversed is because Earth moved away and Mars moved closer to the rover.