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Curiosity rover begins new journey on Mars

Curiosity rover begins new journey on Mars

 

Unable to reach a comparable geological contact farther south on Red Planet, NASA's Curiosity rover has now approached an alternative site for investigating a geological boundary.
 
Such geological contacts can reveal clues about how environmental conditions that produced one type of rock were related to conditions that produced the other.
 
Two weeks ago, Curiosity was headed for a comparable geological contact farther south.
 
Foiled by slippery slopes on the way there, the team rerouted the vehicle and chose a westward path.
 
The mission's strategic planning keeps multiple route options open to deal with such situations.
 
"Mars can be very deceptive," said Chris Roumeliotis, Curiosity's lead rover driver at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California.
 
Sand ripples have caused Curiosity a lot of drive slip in the past but there appeared to be terrain with rockier, more consolidated characteristics directly adjacent to these ripples.
 
"So we drove around the sand ripples onto what we expected to be firmer terrain that would give Curiosity better traction," Roumeliotis added in a NASA statement.
 
The drive of about 72 feet up slopes as steep as 21 degrees brought Curiosity close to a target area where two distinctive types of bedrock meet.
 
The rover science team wants to examine an outcrop that contains the contact between the pale rock unit the mission analysed lower on Mount Sharp.
 
Curiosity has been exploring on Mars since 2012.
 
It reached the base of Mount Sharp last year after fruitfully investigating outcrops closer to its landing site and then trekking to the mountain.
 
The main mission objective now is to examine successively higher layers of Mount Sharp.

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Karnataka ready for ED probe into lottery scam
The Karnataka government would allow Enforcement Directorate (ED) to investigate the lottery scam if it had an inter-state fallout, Home Minister K.J. George said Monday.
 
"We are ready to hand over the lottery scam to the ED for further investigation if it (scam) had spread to other states though it (ED) can probe on its own inter-state scams," George told reporters here.
 
Part of the union finance ministry's revenue department, the ED is a law enforcement and economic intelligence agency responsible for fighting economic crimes.
 
"The ED can investigate any inter-state scam as it does not need our permission to take up economic offence cases," George said.
 
The state CID probed the multi-crore single-digit lottery scam after a Kannada news channel telecast a sting operation in mid-April on its kingpin Peri Rajan boasting high connections with top police officials.
 
The state government on Saturday suspended Bengaluru additional commissioner of police Alok Kumar, a 1994 IPS officer, after the CID's interim report named him as having links with Rajan.
 
"Except that of Kumar, the CID report has not mentioned names of other police officers, serving or retired," George said, denying reports in a section of the media that six more top-ranking police officers had nexus with Rajan.
 
A team of CID sleuths interrogated Kumar on Sunday and Monday to ascertain his association with Rajan and his alleged role in interfering with the probe.
 
Superintendent of Police, Lottery Squad, Dharanesh was suspended earlier this month, as he was heard talking to Rajan in the sting operation's video clip.
 
Meanwhile, Governor Vajubhai Vala has sought a report on the scam and the alleged involvement of senior police officers in it.
 
Meanwhile, Rajan was shifted to the central jail here from the sub-jail at Kolar Gold Fields (KGF) under tight security earlier in the day.

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Saradha scam: Court rejects Madan Mitra's bail plea
Mitra's lawyers sought the minister's bail citing medical reasons
 
A city court on Monday turned down the bail plea of West Bengal Transport Minister Madan Mitra, arrested in the multi-crore rupee Saradha chit fund scam.
 
City sessions judge Kallol Das rejected Mitra's bail plea after hearing both the prosecution and the defence.
 
Mitra's lawyers sought the minister's bail citing medical reasons.
 
Defence counsel Milon Mukherjee submitted documents to support the contention that Mitra was ailing.
 
Mukherjee argued that the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) was "shoddy" in its probe on the issue and there was no certainty when the trial would start.
 
CBI counsel K. Raghava Charyulu opposed the bail plea and submitted that probe into the larger conspiracy was on.
 
Bailing out Mitra would hamper the probe, he said, seeking the court direct doctors from New Delhi's All India Institute of Medical Sciences to examine the minister.
 
Arrested December 12 on charges of criminal conspiracy, cheating and deriving undue financial benefits in connection with the multi-crore rupee Saradha Group chit fund scam, Mitra is now under judicial custody. 
 

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