Mars rover zaps rock with laser

NASA rover has shot a rock on Mars with its laser. Curiosity fired 30 pulses at a nearby rock over a 10-second window, burning a small hole.

Image taken before the test shows the rock chosen as the first target by NASA
Image taken before the test shows the rock chosen as the first target by NASA Credit: NASA/Reuters

During its two year mission NASA will target various rocks as it drives toward Mount Sharp, a 3-mile high mountain rising from the crater floor. Its goal is to determine whether the planet was ever habitable.

First laser test by the so-called 'ChemCam' instrument on NASA's Curiosity Mars rover
First laser test by the so-called 'ChemCam' instrument on NASA's Curiosity Mars rover Credit: NASA/Reuters

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First HD pictures from Mars

Nasa has released the first high-definition colour pictures of Mars sent back to Earth by the Curiosity rover. Curiosity beamed back a recorded voice message from the red planet.