Having been flying towards Mars at a steady pace for 36 weeks, NASA's Hi-tech, unmanned, planet-driving, automated explorer 'rover', dubbed Curiosity, landed this past Sunday on the red planet, and have already sent back images for the whole world to see.

The rover is as large as a car, and was carefully lowered using pinpoint calculations via a sky-crane and various complicated manoeuvres. Powered by nuclear power, and sporting dozens of different instruments, it is the largest rover to be used by NASA's Mars Science Laboratory and its main purpose is to determine of Mars ever sustained or could sustain life.

It has landed in the Gale crater, which is believed to contain sediments of millions of years, and could provide valuable insight to the history of the planet.
The Curiosity has already sent back several images from its landing point, but in the coming few days or weeks the mast will be deployed which contains a high-resolution colour camera.

Some internet sources speculate that after this the next logical step would be to put a man or woman on the red planet. Whether this sci-fi thinking will become reality remains to be seen, but the whole operation is a credit to humanity and computers.