While many of us have been glued to our entertainment devices – iPads, iPhone and televisions watching the London 2012 Summer Olympics, something a little more out of this world happened early Monday morning August 6th. If you’re curious, you’re partially right because after an extremely intense descent, NASA’s rover interestingly named Curiosity, landed safely on Mars.
If you need a break from Gymnastics or the Women’s Soccer final and want to catch a glimpse of history, NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) from California Institute of Technology has a number of videos on YouTube that capture those recent moments and more.
One in particular, Curiosity’s Descent lasts 1:03 which at first doesn’t look like much, is actually a stop motion video of 297 frames taken at 4 frames per second from the Mars Descent Imager that was onboard Curiosity shooting as it was descending and it making its way down to the surface of the planet.
While not certainly glamorous and again may not seem like much, the thought of getting a visual that close up of something that is actually hundreds of millions of kilometers away, especially in our lifetime, is nothing short of spectacular.
There’s also another video, entitled Curiosity Has Landed, which is something you’d expect more from Hollywood that shows the team inside JPL’s mission control along with a visualization and simulation that will give you a little bit more of what you expect when seeing the spacecraft enter Mars’ atmosphere and descend to the surface of the red planet.
Greg Gazin is the Real Canadian Gadget Guy.