Joe Palca, writing for NPR:

Scientists working on NASA's six-wheeled rover on Mars have a problem. But it's a good problem.

They have some exciting new results from one of the rover's instruments. On the one hand, they'd like to tell everybody what they found, but on the other, they have to wait because they want to make sure their results are not just some fluke or error in their instrument.

Curiosity's scientists aren't alone—the Higg's folks went through the same thing, double- and triple-checking their data (and probably more) before they were confident what they were seeing was a real result. That's just science. It pays to be careful. But given the leak, it's a good bet that the Curiosity scientists believe the result is bonafide and not just a fluke.

The NASA team has a lot on the line. The launch, transit, and landing were so flawless that expectations are high for the remainder of the mission. There's also a human dimension to the suspense—many scientists on the team have been dreaming of a day like this since they were kids.

Here's to hoping they really have found something amazing.

blog comments powered by Disqus