What has NASA's Curiosity found on Mars?

NASA has kept a snappy Twitter feed for the car-sized, six-wheeled rover throughout its time on Mars, and it has nearly 4 million followers. NASA has also added that "the results are embargoed by the journal Science until then", which confirmes the rumors that NASA doesn't want to reveal anything before Thursday.

The next step to making the rover fully operational again was the analysis of the said rock sample, in the form of Martian powder, inside the rover's two laboratories.

The Mars Curiosity Rover has found something new and exciting on the Red Planet, but we'll have to wait until Thursday to learn what it is.

In 2016, the rover's drill encountered a crippling mechanical problem.

According to NASA, one of the rover's onboard labs analyzed a drilled rock sample for the first time in more than a year.

Delivery to its chemistry lab will follow at the week ahead and go farther with the testing of the drilling methods alongside the sample delivery will continue to be improved and mastered by Curiosity's engineers that will enable them to research their results from the Red Planet.

"This was no small feat". But the resourceful Curiosity team came up with a new way to move the samples - a technique dubbed "feed extended sample transfer", which is more compatible with the FED than the previously used method, CHIMRA (Collection and Handling for In-Situ Martian Rock Analysis).

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"The science team was confident that the engineers would deliver - so confident that we drove back to a site that we missed drilling before".

"We're cautiously optimistic that MarCO-B can follow MarCO-A", said Joel Krajewski of JPL, MarCO's project manager. "The gambit paid off, and we now have a key sample we might have never gotten", Vasavada pointed out. "It is rather impressive to have a moment such as this, five years to the assignment". This allows the rover to trickle in the proper amount of stone powder for the onboard laboratories to perform their investigations.

This delivery method had already been successfully tested at JPL.

But, that is here on Earth; around Mars, the thin, dry air provides very different requirements for powder falling from this drill.

"On Mars we have to try and estimate visually whether this is working, just by looking at images of how much powder falls out", said John Michael Moorokian of JPL, the engineer who led development of the new sample delivery method. "We're talking about as little as half a baby aspirin worth of sample". If too much of the powder is delivered, then the instruments of the rover could get clogged, and if it's too less, the analysis might not be accurate.

The Curiosity mission is part of the Mars Science Laboratory mission.

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