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First photos from NASA's rover's landingEver feel bummed that the year is already 2012, and it doesn't feel like (at least the the '80s, Back to the Future II version of) the future at all? Well, today's exciting events should give you a little swell of pride that we're getting there -- slowly but surely. The NASA's rover, Curiosity, successfully landed in an extremely precise spot on Mars this morning and began transmitting images back to Earth.
Although we've conducted missions to Mars in the past, this is "the most sophisticated roving laboratory ever to land on another planet," according to President Obama. And the goal of the rover's work is "to assess whether Mars ever had an environment able to support small life forms," NASA says. So cool!
Obviously, scientists are elated, because this could be a gold mine for them, but it's also a major cause for regular Americans to celebrate.
We should be beyond proud that we live in a country that still has the technology and passion to devote time and resources to space exploration -- which could lead to many advancements on Earth and for humankind. China's space exploration program is growing, while ours is shrinking, and yet, we've prioritized and accomplished this Mars rover landing. It tells the world that we're capable and determined to GO BIG!
What's more, missions like this one could lead to major discoveries -- like potentially, a place for us to colonize outside of Earth. Faced with a massive population of 6.8 BILLION people and counting combined with dwindling resources thanks to climate change, we could use solutions STAT. And how huge would it be if we could figure out if Mars -- or any other planet, for that matter -- hosted life and/or had the potential to sustain life?
Even if that's not the case, it can only help us as a society to continually push limits, prod, and be, well, curious about what's outside us as a people, our country, our planet. And there's no doubt this accomplishment alone already has and will continue to breed rewards for us on so many levels ... well beyond feeling like we're finally living in '80s sci-fi flick!
Check out this video for more details on the landing ...
Are you psyched about the Mars Rover landing? Do you agree space exploration is crucial for America?