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Put Martian ideas to work here

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The Mars rover Curiosity made headlines in early August when it landed safely and set to work on the red planet. The latest on Mars continues to make headlines.  
On Aug. 19, Earth received the first Martian chemical data produced by Curiosity’s ChemCam and its rock-zapping laser.
The  data came by radio and took 14 minutes to speed 154 million miles back to  earthlings eager to see more.
We marvel at the  technical wonders that tell us what is on the next planet out from the  sun.  
Curiosity explores the state of Mars.
 And exhibits ideas that can help with Earth’s problems.
Which technologies aboard the rover  Curiosity could be adapted to local needs for environmental sampling and  analysis? If we can detect chemicals and their histories on Mars, can we check  out pollutants more quickly on Earth?  
These  questions sprang up on a bright September day at this year’s Next Big Idea  Festival that our town holds each year.
A mock-up of Curiosity and the Los  Alamos National Laboratory’s ChemCam stood on the well-kept grass beside the  laboratory tent.
The Star Wars look of it was enough to ask “what if?”


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