This is fantastic news. I fell asleep and woke about 30 seconds before the NASA JPL folks got word that Curiosity had safely landed on Mars.
I understand the elation of the folks in JPL’s mission center – I’ve been involved in projects of smaller scale that face insurmountable odds but we got through.
And I had a feeling that they’d pull it off. NASA has been very focused on throwing hardware at Mars over the last few decades. And I know the tethering mechanism was conceived, planned, tested, tested again, and tested yet again before the rover even got onto the rocket.
So I had confidence it would be successful. And it was.
Congratulations to NASA’s JPL folks – for pushing engineering to the limit!