Mars rover Curiosity gets software upgrade, wheel check

By Ritu Singh | Last Updated: Sunday, December 22, 2013 - 22:01

Zee Media Bureau

Mars rover Curiosity has got a software upgrade and is being checked for the wear and tear on the one-tonne robot`s wheels caused by the rugged Martian surface.

NASA reported that the wheels of Curiosity rover are sustaining damage at an increasing rate.

"Curiosity is now operating on version 11 of its flight software," said Jim Erickson of NASA`s Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

This is the third upgrade version since Curiosity`s landing on Mars 16 months ago. Completing the switch from version 10 took about a week, NASA said.

An earlier switch to version 11 prompted an unintended reboot on November 7 and a return to version 10, but the latest transition went smoothly.

These upgrades allow continued advances in the rover`s capabilities. For example, version 11 brings expanded capability for using the Curiosity`s robotic arm while the vehicle is on slopes.
It also improves flexibility for storing information overnight to use in resuming autonomous driving on a second day.

First Published: Sunday, December 22, 2013 - 22:00
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