Cheers and applause echoed through the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory last night after "Curiosity" had survived the harrowing plunge.
NASA's Mars rover landed safe and sound on the surface of Mars late Sunday night. The 1-ton, 6-wheeled laboratory nailed an intricate and risky touchdown much to the relief and joy of over 300 people who watched the historic event live at the University of Utah.
Aron Barber, a graduate student in the physics and astronomy department was there to celebrate with his Mars landing simulator:
"It's another step forward for science. You wouldn't have robotic surgeries or anything like that if you didn't have the pure science of missions like robotic rovers on Mars."
The rover will take rock and soil samples in search of life on the red planet.