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Special Report

NASA's Curiosity Rover Touches Down on Mars

The car-size Curiosity rover could help answer the big question: Was Mars ever habitable?

  • August 6, 2012

Curiosity Leaves Earth for Mars

The newest Mars rover, Curiosity, dwarfs NASA's previous rovers in size and scientific prowess. John Matson reports

November 28, 2011

The Countdown, Episode 1: Earliest Spiral Galaxy, Earth as Art, the Pioneer Anomaly, a Rocket-Loving Gopher, 7 Minutes of Terror

Welcome to The Countdown, the Scientific American show that counts down the five coolest things happening now in space news.Episode 1: July 26, 2012 Story 5 Galaxies from the early universe usually look kind of lumpy or blobby, but scientists have spotted one with a spiral structure, making it look a lot like our own Milky Way galaxy.See Primordial Pinwheel: Astronomers Spot Oldest Prominent Spiral Galaxy Yet.

July 26, 2012 — Philip Yam

Skiing To Mars: The Original Rovers

Prime real estate. The landing zone for Curiosity (NASA/JPL) As the world waits with bated breath for NASA's Curiosity rover to attempt a safe landing on Mars on August 6th (EDT), it's interesting to recall the rovers of times past.

July 23, 2012 — Caleb A. Scharf

Mars Attacked: Planetary Scientists Vent Frustrations over Proposed Budget Cuts

NASA/JPL-Caltech/Cornell University THE WOODLANDS, Texas—Planetary scientists, usually an affable lot, are plenty riled up at the moment.The field is bristling at cutbacks, proposed last month by the Obama administration, to planetary science and especially to NASA's program of robotic Mars explorers.

March 20, 2012 — John Matson

Curiosity's Storybook Wishes For Mars

The Martian rovers Opportunity and Spirit have represented optimism, hope, and even cuteness to millions of people dreaming about discoveries on the red planet.How appropriate then, that the newest rover, Curiosity, should carry a sundial with sentiments and illustrations worthy of classic children's literature.

December 8, 2011 — Glendon Mellow

The Long Hard Road to Mars

Mars Pathfinder launches in 1996 Starting this Saturday, a 24 day window of opportunity opens for the launch of NASA's Mars Science Laboratory, now also known as the Curiosity rover.

November 25, 2011 — Caleb A. Scharf

Sky Crane - how to land Curiosity on the surface of Mars

On 26th November 2011 at 15:02, NASA launched its Mars Science Laboratory mission. Bird's eye view of MER rover Spirit combines self portrait and mosaic of the surface surrounding the rover.

November 28, 2011 — Amy Shira Teitel

Curiosity Across the Stars

This is not a comet, it's Curiosity on its way to Mars This, I guarantee, is a view of NASA's Curiosity rover embarking on its 250 day trip to Mars that you may not have seen before.

November 28, 2011 — Caleb A. Scharf