Colorado’s role in Curiosity’s mission to Mars began nearly nine months ago, when NASA’s $2.5 billion machine was sent on its space trajectory aboard a rocket created by United Launch Alliance, which has headquarters in Centennial. Placing the spacecraft on its the correct path was crucial for the spacecraft’s successful landing.
Additionally, Southwest Research Institute’s Boulder office created one of the 10 high-tech science instruments that will collect data related to Mars’ habitability. The mission’s primary goal is to determine past, present, and future elements that either facilitate or inhibit life on the planet.
The institute developed the Radiation Assessment Detector, RAD, which will analyze the characteristics of Mars’ radiation.
(Photo: NASA handout)
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