Mars Curiosity rover: HD video of landing, and an image of her first drive

[Video Link] Above, HD video of the Mars Curiosity Rover's landing on Mars. And below, an image of her first drive. (via @tweetsoutloud)


  1. From what I understand that video is not an official NASA video, but rather from an enthusiast who created it from existing images and filling in the blanks.

  2. I’m still having trouble adjusting to the idea that Mars is a real place.  Not just a collection of instrument readings and hubble images, or a vague fantasy.  It’s somewhere you could actually be, just the same as how you’re here now.  Sort of like Montana, but farther away.  The banality of that is exactly what’s so amazing.

    1. And then… Try to imagine all this sequence of landing and preparations as you were standing there and watching. Friggin metal spider with rocket engines lowers this car sized rover, flies away and crashes. This rover then sits there for couple sols without any movement. But from time to time it makes some tiny sounds, moves it’s robotic arm, turns camera. And sits there again for hours. Zaps a tiny rock with laser. On one sol it starts moving. Moves couple meters here and there, turns around, goes silent again. It’s like from some sci-fi book, except we actually are (let’s get back to Earth) here and experience it. Not directly, but.. Hey, how cool is that every day we commute to work, hang out with friends and have new pictures coming to our pockets from another friggin planet hundreds of millions kilometres away. I think I need a drink now.

    2. It blew my mind a few years back when I looked a couple of detailed Martian panoramas, imagining what it would be like to stand on a distant world, totally different from our own in many ways, yet so much like it in others.

      You look at a distant hill and think for a moment that, if you could climb to the top, you could look down onto some small desert town and a few roads winding here and there.

      Then you realize there are no towns – anywhere.  No billboards, gas stations, farms, rivers… or people.

      Then I realized what a special mindset the first Martian explorers would need to have, to be absolutely alone, millions of miles from home, totally dependent on whatever supplies and rations they brought with them until, hopefully, they returned home.

    1. Unfortunately the only lander with a microphone fitted was the ill-fated Beagle 2.
      At a guess it probably sounds mainly just windy, with assorted robot noises.
      (although I did make up my own sound effects to the landing video ;)

    2. I’d love to hear it. I would have fears of hearing Mars at night….”Bloop!…Bloop Bloop!”

      Then seeing a gaggle of Bloop monkeys from Lost in Space cross the cam the next day.

      I’m tired and I had too much fruit today.

      1. I imagine the “daytime” JPL operators wrapping it up for the night, switching off cameras, etc, and just as they head for the door… A SCREAM!

    3. Yeah.  Images are great – in fact I can watch videos like this all day long.  But… thinking of hearing the sound of wind howling and whistling over the surface of a world that has never seen humans sends shivers down my spine.

  3. Fantastic and HYPNOTIC!!! Could watch that over and over…and you’re right, the banality of it is precisely what makes it so exciting…that is another world, but it’s really just a place like here on Earth.

  4. Great, now the wheels are dirty.

    Don’t you hate it when the spotless black tires on your new car get dirty for the first time?

    Pretty soon, someone’s going to have to go there and wash them.

    1. Actually, I’m happy when the car gets its first scratch so that I can stop treating it like a baby.

  5. Ooops, I just crapped my pants.

  6. Keep in mind, that those Republican members of Congress who have declared war on science, education, teachers, women, senior citizens and God only knows what else, want to cut NASA’s budget so that missions like this won’t occur in our children’s future, let alone ours.  Write your elected representatives and tell them not to cut NASA’s budget, not now, or in the future.

  7. Finally after years of vague graphs and fuzzy black and white photos and (for reasons I could never quite grasp, “artificially recolored photos”) Mars finally looks real as in really a real place. This video is epic on so many levels.

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