Not just for geeks and STEM students:Watch
This is an historic achievement as it captures, for the first time, the landing of a craft on another planet in high definition colour video.
The video shows the craft in the final stages of descent from orbit, then deploying it's parachute, separating the heat shield, searching for a suitable landing spot in the designated target area and finally descending to the surface before the landing vehicle 'sky crane' detaches and safely flies away.
A remarkable and outstanding feat given the complexity of engineering and science involved. Not least that the signals were stored in memory then relayed up to several orbiting probes before final transmission back to receiving stations on Earth.
The one way journey takes the radio signals 11 minutes to travel from the orbiting stations to Earth (120+million miles). The descent alone captured 30 gigabytes of data and over 23,000 images.
The next big step in the coming days/weeks is flying the first powered aircraft (a helicopter named 'ingenuity') on Mars to get aerial views and develop the technology to travel further and faster into inaccessible terrain. Stay tuned.
No doubt the shape of things to come when the first manned missions land humans on the surface in the coming years.
Congratulations to all at JPL, NASA, ESA, uncle Tom Cobley and all!
The complexities and miraculousness are beyond comprehension.
The levels of precision, and tight tolerances on every single element of the system from launch to landing are ridiculous not to mention the experimentation and data transmission all being resent back to earth.
Marvelous stuff NASA.
Nothing on the surface to gain scale perspective - same as on the moon with the Apollo missions: