Curiosity has landed
This country once again has achieved the impossible.
The United States has more than its share of troubles right now. But the fact that there is nothing America cannot achieve when it marshals its collective will was proven once again early Monday morning when it landed a rover on the surface of Mars.
Get this: The rover, which is intended to explore the planet's surface, was lowered by cables from a hovering rocket.
This incredible achievement is the result of years of hard work that was made all the more improbable because of the timing involved. It was originally scheduled for 2009, but technical problems forced a 26-month delay caused by the need to solve the existing problems and the necessity of waiting for Earth and Mars to be in proper position.
This is science fiction come true, and more developments are in the offing.
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration is using the rover, which is named Curiosity, to search for evidence that life once existed or may still exist on Mars.
The size of a small car and equipped with what is described as "the most sophisticated moveable laboratory that has ever been sent to another planet," Curiosity is scheduled to spend the next two years examining the 96-mile crater in which it landed.
This mission was replete with hazard, the most prominent of which was a possible crash landing.
Drawn by gravity from Mars, the spacecraft carrying Curiosity was moving at speeds up to 13,000 miles per hour.
Despite some tense moments, the mission proceeded flawlessly. A couple of hours after the landing, Curiosity was sending back photographs.
As exciting as it is, the landing is just the beginning of a story that will command attention and awe on a worldwide scale.