Following a successful wheel wiggle, NASA's Curiosity rover made its first test drive yesterday across the Red Planet.
Curiosity moved 15 feet (4.6m) forward, rotated and then reversed 8 feet (2.4m) glitch-free. The track marks left in the Martian soil confirmed that the ground was firm enough to allow for good mobility on future expeditions.
Although the rover didn’t stray very far, the test drive was deemed a success and has reassured the team that Curiosity is ready for the next driving challenge. The rover will stay in its current position until it's summoned for its first expedition to a site 1,300 feet (396m) away, where it will drill bedrock.
Curiosity has continued to undergo check-ups, with a damaged wind sensor being spotted. NASA believes that stones and other debris during the landing could have been the cause. The rover is now left with one sensor to record wind conditions.
Written by Jennifer Harris