Feeds

Curiosity plunges its drill into Mars AGAIN, seeks life-giving sample

Crew hopes results from second stone will back up wet Mars theory

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

Intrepid Mars rover Curiosity has bored into its second stone on the surface of the Red Planet, taking a sample from the interior of a rock called "Cumberland".

Second stone drilled by Curiosity

The Martian nuclear truck drilled into Cumberland on Sunday, making an impression 1.6cm in diameter and 6.6cm deep, and is expected to deliver the resulting powder sample to its scientific instruments in the next few days.

Curiosity already performed a drilling on the "John Klein" rock, also in the shallow depression known as Yellowknife Bay, three months ago. Preliminary test results on the sample showed that Mars could indeed have once sustained microbial life, with elements including sulphur, nitrogen, hydrogen, oxygen and carbon - needed to support that life - all present.

The science lab's primary mission on the Red Planet is to figure out if the world could have ever supported life and boffins will be hoping that the Cumberland results will back up the findings from John Klein. They'll be looking for the same elements as well as an energy gradient that could be used by microbes and evidence of water that wasn't too harshly acidic or briny.

After a few more high-priority observations in and around Yellowknife Bay, the rover is due to start off on its way to the base of Mount Sharp, a trek that will take months. ®

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

More from The Register

next story
Renewable energy 'simply WON'T WORK': Top Google engineers
Windmills, solar, tidal - all a 'false hope', say Stanford PhDs
SEX BEAST SEALS may be egging each other on to ATTACK PENGUINS
Boffin: 'I think the behaviour is increasing in frequency'
Post-pub nosh neckfiller: The MIGHTY Scotch egg
Off to the boozer? This delicacy might help mitigate the effects
I'M SO SORRY, sobs Rosetta Brit boffin in 'sexist' sexy shirt storm
'He is just being himself' says proud mum of larger-than-life physicist
NASA launches new climate model at SC14
75 days of supercomputing later ...
The next big thing in medical science: POO TRANSPLANTS
Your brother's gonna die, kid, unless we can give him your, well ...
Britain's HUMAN DNA-strewing Moon mission rakes in £200k
3 days, and Kickstarter moves lander 37% nearer takeoff
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
10 threats to successful enterprise endpoint backup
10 threats to a successful backup including issues with BYOD, slow backups and ineffective security.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Internet Security Threat Report 2014
An overview and analysis of the year in global threat activity: identify, analyze, and provide commentary on emerging trends in the dynamic threat landscape.