Curiosity the Mars Rover which landed on the planet six months ago has set to work and for the first time drilled into the surface of Mars.
The powdered sample which it collected could hold the clues as to whether there has been life on the planet.
The pictures beamed back to NASA show a hole about 1.6 centimetres wide and 6.4 centimetres deep.
The fine grey dust will be sieved and inspected before being analysed in the robot’s onboard laboratories.
It is an historic first in planetary exploration as never before has the interior of a rock on another world been probed in such a way.
Drilling is central to the rover’s work taking place in Gale Crater which is a deep bowl on Mars’ equator. Engineers spent days preparing to use Curiosity’s drill and had practice sessions earlier in the week.
Previous probes have used tools to scrape the rock but a drill has never been used before to collect samples.
The rover is looking for geologic and chemical conditions needed to support and preserve microbial life.
Copyright © 2014 euronewsMore about:
- 1Minsk summit: Ukraine peace – a work in progress
- 2Firearms expert shot dead by 9-year-old girl
- 3Islamists seize border post between Syria and Israeli-occupied Golan Heights
- 4[As it happened] Newsday: Ukraine-Russia – Gaza ceasefire – Islamic State – US shooting
- 5Sick of the ice bucket challenge? Here are five worthy alternatives
- 1#ن: How an Arabic letter was reclaimed to support Iraq’s persecuted Christians | euronews, world news
- 2Ellen MacArthur: making waves on a journey to a circular economy | euronews, the global conversation
- 3China executes eight Muslims convicted of terrorism | euronews, world news
- 4Putin T-Shirts flying off the shelves at Moscow megastore | euronews, world news
- 5Everything you need to know about the Ebola virus | euronews, world news
- 6Ukraine accuses Russian aid convoy of stealing factory equipment | euronews, world news
- 7Massive Swedish forest fire is declared a national emergency | euronews, world news
- 8Risk of fresh ash cloud threatens European air travel | euronews, world news
- 9Iceland warns Europe’s airlines of possible volcanic eruption | euronews, world news
- 10Beyond the subconscious | euronews, futuris
- 11Man, 27, fails in suicide bid after tigers reject chance to eat him | euronews, world news
- 12Romania buys into bitcoin big time | euronews, corporate
- 13Bardarbunga volcano in Iceland continues to rumble | euronews, world news
- 14Poland wants compensation from the EU for Russian import ban | euronews, world news
- 15EU’s Russia sanctions doing more harm than good says Hungary’s PM Orban | euronews, world news
- 16Portugal hopes to become a pensioner’s paradise with zero tax offer | euronews, reporter
- 17A robot that grows | euronews, futuris
- 18Malta opera star Joseph Calleja’s summer concert draws big crowd | euronews, le mag
- 19Turkey’s women have the last laugh | euronews, world news
- 20Greek farmers suffer in economic war between Russia and EU | euronews, economy
Wires > News
- 00:09 CET U.S. moves prisoners from Afghanistan to Pakistan, Yemen
- 23:16 CET India’s Modi eyes breakthrough nuclear pact on Japan trip
- 23:14 CET Lebanese army shells militant positions in Syria border zone
- 23:07 CET Shambolic election campaign leaves Indonesia’s president-elect…
- 19:59 CET Libya warns United Nations of possible slide into civil war
- 19:39 CET Cameroon says kills 27 Boko Haram militants in border clashes
- 19:34 CET EU to launch mission to help Italy cope with boat migrants
- 19:08 CET Germany to decide on military aid for Iraq on Sunday – minister