NASA to announce new Mars discovery Thursday

Further details on the find, however, are now scarce and the rover's results have been embargoed by the journal Science until the official NASA unveiling.

The space agency has so far remained silent about the nature of its conference but the live discussion will detail results from the Curiosity Rover's expeditions.

If all goes according to plan, the twin communications-relay Mars Cube One (MarCO) spacecraft will allow NASA to quickly transmit status information about InSight as it lands on Mars on November 26, 2018.

The "live discussion" starts at 2 p.m. EDT and will be broadcast on NASA Live and NASA Television.

Curiosity has been exploring Mars since touching down in August 2012 with the goal of finding out if the red planet was ever able to support microbial life.

Among the researchers invited to share the new Curiosity rover discovery with the public are two scientists from NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, and two representatives from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California.

In 2016, the rover's drill encountered a crippling mechanical problem. Meanwhile, the delivery of sample into the rover's chemistry lab is also slated to occur in a few days.

As part of the new method of transferring samples into the onboard lab, Curiosity positions its drill over two small inlets on top its deck and trickles the suitable amount of rock powder required by the lab to conduct the analysis.

"This was no small feat".

"The science team was convinced that the engineers could deliver-so Convinced we drove back into some website that we overlooked drilling ahead". Engineers at NASA spent more than a year developing a workaround drilling technique called Feed Extended Drilling, or FED, which uses the rover's robotic arm to direct and push the drill into the ground as the drill bit spins. But this is a major milestone for the mission, said Ashwin Vasavada of JPL, the mission's project scientist. The risk paid off, and now we have a key pattern that we may have never received. "It means we can resume studying Mount Sharp, which Curiosity is climbing, with our full range of scientific tools".

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