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Bridging climate science, citizens, and policy

Mars Science Laboratory Landing Site Decided: Gale Crater

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In an update to my post earlier this week, NASA has decided that the Mars Science Laboratory’s target landing site will be Gale Crater.

Gale crater is about 96 miles (154 kilometers) wide and has a mountain at its center that rises higher, from the crater floor up, than Mount Rainer near Seattle. The crater, which is named after Australian astronomer Walter F. Gale, is so large that the U.S. states of Connecticut and Rhode Island could fit inside it, NASA officials said.

Launch is set for November of this year, with touchdown expected in August 2012.

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