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Curiosity Rover Completes 6 Years On Mars: NASA

Based on the longevity of a 2001 global storm, NASA scientists estimate it may be September before the haze has cleared enough for Opportunity to power up and call home.

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NASA Curiosity rover completes 6 years on Mars. Pixabay
NASA Curiosity rover completes 6 years on Mars. Pixabay
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NASA’s Curiosity rover is celebrating its sixth anniversary on Mars which is currently experiencing a global storm.

“I touched down on #Mars six years ago. Celebrating my 6th landing anniversary with the traditional gift of iron oxide. (It puts the red in Red Planet.),” said a tweet sent out by the rover on Sunday.

Curiosity, which landed on Mars in 2012, was designed to assess whether Mars ever had an environment able to support small life forms called microbes. In other words, its mission is to determine the planet’s “habitability.”

The rover is currently keeping its “eyes” on a dust event that had gone global by June 20.

The rover is currently keeping its "eyes" on a dust event that had gone global by June 20. Flickr
The rover is currently keeping its “eyes” on a dust event that had gone global by June 20. Flickr

Most of NASA’s spacecraft are studying the dust storm from above. But the Curiosity rover has a unique perspective: the nuclear-powered science machine is largely immune to the darkened skies, allowing it to collect science from within the beige veil enveloping the planet.

Curiosity has a number of “eyes” that can determine the abundance and size of dust particles based on how they scatter and absorb light, NASA said in a statement in July.

That includes its Mastcam, ChemCam, and an ultraviolet sensor on REMS, its suite of weather instruments.

NASA lost contact with its Opportunity rover due to the storm.

Also Read: NASA: No Contact Made With Storm-Hit Mars Rovers, Till Now

Based on the longevity of a 2001 global storm, NASA scientists estimate it may be September before the haze has cleared enough for Opportunity to power up and call home. (IANS)

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India will Send a Manned Flight into Space by 2020: Modi

He said India will become a growth engine for the world economy as the "sleeping elephant'' has started to run on the back of structural economic reforms.

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A high rise building is illuminated in the colors of the Indian tricolor flag on the eve of Independence Day in Kolkata, India
A high rise building is illuminated in the colors of the Indian tricolor flag on the eve of Independence Day in Kolkata, India. VOA

India will send a manned flight into space by 2022, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced Wednesday as part of India’s independence day celebrations.

He said India will become the fourth country after Russia, the United States and China to achieve the feat and its astronaut could be a man or a woman. The space capsule that will transport India’s astronauts was tested a few days earlier.

Rakesh Sharma was the first Indian to travel in space, aboard a Soviet rocket in 1984. As part of its own space program, India successfully put a satellite into orbit around Mars in 2014.

India won independence from British colonialists in 1947. Modi’s 80-minute speech, broadcast live from the historic Red Fort in New Delhi, comes months before national elections.

Modi listed his government’s achievements in the past four years in reforming the country’s economy, reducing poverty and corruption. He announced a health insurance scheme for 500 million poor people providing a cover of 500,000 rupees ($7,150) per family a year.

A woman sells Indian national flag memorabilia on the eve of Independence Day in Lucknow, India
A woman sells Indian national flag memorabilia on the eve of Independence Day in Lucknow, India. VOA

He said India will become a growth engine for the world economy as the “sleeping elephant” has started to run on the back of structural economic reforms.

He said its economy was seen as fragile before 2014 but was now attracting investment. India is the sixth largest economy in the world and Modi said international institutions see India as giving strength to the world economy for the next three decades.

Also Read: Amazon’s Alexa Can Now Learn Hindi and Other Indian Languages

He said the structural reforms like a national tax replacing various national and local taxes, bankruptcy and insolvency laws, and a crackdown on corruption have helped transform the economy. (VOA)

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