Saturday, August 11, 2012

Mystery Solved on Mars Rover's UFO


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By The Sidney Morning Herald
8-11-12

     Space enthusiasts have been abuzz for days over whether the Mars rover Curiosity captured an extraterrestrial crash. On Friday, NASA declared the mystery solved.

Seconds after the car-size rover parked its six wheels in an ancient crater, a tiny camera under the chassis snapped a picture revealing a smudge on the horizon. The feature disappeared in a later photo.

Was it dirt on the camera lens or a spinning dust devil? It turned out Curiosity spotted the aftermath of its rocket-powered backpack crash-landing in the distance.

It "was an amazing coincidence that we were able to catch this impact," said engineer Steve Sell of the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory . . ..

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