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Martians yet to retaliate after Curiosity's 100,000th laser strike
It looks like we've got them outgunned!
NASA has revealed that Curiosity, the laser-armed, nuclear-powered space tank that's been rolling around Mars for over a year now, appears to have defeated the Martian race. If indeed it exists.
We make that leap of logic after the space agency revealed the rover's laser has now penetrated the red planet's soil more than 102,000 times.
The laser is part of an instrument called “Chem Cam” that makes use of a laser “to excite material in a pinhead-size spot on the target into a glowing, ionized gas, called plasma.”
Once Curiosity reduces another piece of Martian territory to plasma, Chem Cam “observes that spark with the telescope and analyzes the spectrum of light to identify elements in the target.”
NASA says all those laser zaps have produced more than 1,600 photos of Mars rocks, but makes no mention of whether Martians have in any way noticed or retaliated.
The Reg takes that as a sign we've got Mars on the run. Whether Martians are hiding beneath their planet's red sands planning a counter-strike, cowering in some crater lest Curiosity turn its guns on them or hibernating against the day the red planet's climate changes for the better, the lack of response surely signals Humanity's first extra-terrestrial conquest.
Keep blasting, brave Curiosity! We're all right behind you! ®