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The Curiosity Mars rover vehicle has damaged a wheel
by Staff Writers
Moscow (Voice of Russia) Feb 04, 2014


File image.

The Curiosity Mars rover vehicle has damaged one of its wheels against a sharp rock. It happened when the rover was going through dunes to Aeolis, the central peak of the Gale crater.

Since one of Curiosity's wheels received a damage in the autumn of 2013, scientist are trying to regularly photograph all its wheels. Now, they have noticed that the rover's front left wheel has a puncture about 5 to 8 cms long and 3 cms wide.

At present, NASA engineers are deciding what will be the safer route for the Mars rover now, taking the damage into account.

The rover has already gone nearly 5 kms after it landed on Mars.

Several days ago, NASA celebrated 10 years since its another rover vehicle, Opportunity, landed on Mars.

NASA Mars project: radiation risk of highest concern - space expert

Russian Anastasia Stepanova is through to the second round of applicant selection for the Mars One program. Anastasia, a Moscow resident, could end up among the 20 finalists that will embark on a one-way trip to the Red Planet. Igor Mitrofanov of the Space Research Institute at the Russian Academy of Sciences told the Voice of Russia that the largest risk comes from a "very big radiation doze which will be accumulated during this trip."

The Voice of Russia discussed the topic with Igor Mitrofanov, principal investigator of the Russian space experiment DAN on board of NASA Curiosity Mars rover.

What kind of people do you think would want to embark on a one-way mission to Mars? It is kind of suicidal, isn't it?

First of all, I would like to tell you my personal opinion that, of course, the exploration of Mars is very important and, probably, this is now the most important strategic goal of the space exploration for our countries. On the other hand, I think that the work has to be done by the professional people who take into account all the current scientific knowledge and also technology developments. It is my personal opinion, but I cannot accept quite seriously the current attempt to make one-way trip to Mars, which is now under consideration.

Since it is a one-way trip and so many people have filed applications to go there, what do you think about these people? What kind of people would want to take such a suicidal selfless mission?

I believe that these people are not professional in space science and technology, because would they be professional, they probably would not make this application, because they would have known how difficult this is and what big risk is associated with this attempt. I think that probably these people have some interest in these extreme games when people decide to do something risky by themselves just to experience some emotions out of this action.

Source: Voice of Russia

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