Nasa has landed its Curiosity rover, a one-tonne robot the size of a Mini Cooper, on Mars, in one of the most daring and difficult interplanetary operations attempted.

Scientists at the Nasa control room reacted with whoops of jubilation early Monday morning as the £1.6 billion one-ton robot was lowered to the Martian surface on three nylon tethers suspended from a hovering "sky crane" kept airborne with retro rockets.

An expected signal confirming that the robot had landed was received on Earth at 6.31am UK time.

Take a look at the moment the craft touched down in the slideshow below:

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  • MARS LANDING

    Mars Science Laboratory Flight Director Keith Comeaux, watches the staff before the Curiosity rover's landing, inside the Spaceflight Operations Facility for NASA's Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity rover at Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., Sunday, Aug. 5, 2012. The Curiosity robot is equipped with a nuclear-powered lab capable of vaporizing rocks and ingesting soil, measuring habitability, and potentially paving the way for human exploration. (AP Photo/Brian van der Brug, pool)

  • Curiosity Lands On Mars

    Shannon Lampton, and Charlene Pittman, both educators with the U.S. Space and Rocket Center, cheer as they watch NASA's Mars Curiosity rover land on Mars during a special viewing event at the U.S. Space and Rocket Center Monday, Aug. 6, 2012 in Huntsville, Ala. (AP Photo/The Huntsville Times, Eric Schultz)

  • MARS LANDING

    Brian Schratz hugs a colleague as he celebrates a successful landing inside the Spaceflight Operations Facility for NASA's Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity rover at Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., Sunday Aug. 5, 2012. The Curiosity robot is equipped with a nuclear-powered lab capable of vaporizing rocks and ingesting soil, measuring habitability, and potentially paving the way for human exploration. (AP Photo/Brian van der Brug, Pool)

  • MARS LANDING

    Activity lead Bobak Ferdowsi, center, wipes tears away after a successful landing inside the Spaceflight Operations Facility for NASA's Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity rover at Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., Sunday Aug. 5, 2012. The Curiosity robot is equipped with a nuclear-powered lab capable of vaporizing rocks and ingesting soil, measuring habitability, and potentially paving the way for human exploration. (Brian van der Brug/Los Angeles Times-POOL)

  • MARS LANDING

    Flight director Keith Comeaux, right, celebrates with Martin Greco after a successful landing inside the Spaceflight Operations Facility for NASA's Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity rover at Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., Sunday, Aug. 5, 2012. The Curiosity robot is equipped with a nuclear-powered lab capable of vaporizing rocks and ingesting soil, measuring habitability, and potentially paving the way for human exploration. (AP Photo/Brian van der Brug,Pool)

  • In a photo provided by NASA, the Mars Science Laboratory team in the MSL Mission Support Area reacts after learning the the Curiosity rover has landed safely on Mars and images start coming in at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory on Mars, Sunday, Aug. 5, 2012 in Pasadena, Calif. The MSL Rover named Curiosity was designed to assess whether Mars ever had an environment able to support small life forms called microbes. Photo Credit: (AP Photo/NASA/Bill Ingalls)

  • MARS LANDING

    Steve Collins waits during the "Seven Minutes of Terror" as the rover approaches the surface of mars, inside the Spaceflight Operations Facility for NASA's Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity rover at Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, Sunday, Aug. 5, 2012. The Curiosity robot is equipped with a nuclear-powered lab capable of vaporizing rocks and ingesting soil, measuring habitability, and potentially paving the way for human exploration. (AP Photo/Brian van der Brug, Pool)

  • MARS LANDING

    Adam Steltzner, right, celebrates a successful landing inside the Spaceflight Operations Facility for NASA's Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity rover at Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., Sunday, Aug. 5, 2012. The Curiosity robot is equipped with a nuclear-powered lab capable of vaporizing rocks and ingesting soil, measuring habitability, and potentially paving the way for human exploration. (AP Photo/Brian van der Brug, Pool)

  • In this photo released by NASA's JPL, Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) team members talk in the MSL Mission Support Area at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory ahead of the planned landing of the Curiosity rover on Mars, Sunday, Aug. 5, 2012 in Pasadena, Calif. The MSL Rover named Curiosity was designed to assess whether Mars ever had an environment able to support small life forms called microbes. Curiosity is due to land on Mars at 10:31 p.m. PDT on Aug. 5, 2012 (1:31 a.m. EDT on Aug. 6, 2012) (AP Photo/NASA, Bill Ingalls)

  • In an image provided by Nasa musician Will.i.am, center, listens to NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Sciences and Exploration Directorate Chief Scientist Jim Garvin, left, talk next to a mock up of the Mars Science Laboratory rover Curiosity as Astronaut and NASA's Associate Administrator for Education Leland Melvin looks on at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory a few hours ahead of the the planned landing of the Curiosity rover on Mars, Sunday, Aug. 5, 2012 in Pasadena, Calif. The MSL Rover named Curiosity was designed to assess whether Mars ever had an environment able to support small life forms called microbes.(AP Photo/NASA, Bill Ingalls)

  • In this photo released by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) team members gather in the MSL Mission Support Area at the JPL hours ahead of the planned landing of the Curiosity rover on Mars, Sunday, Aug. 5, 2012 in Pasadena, Calif. The MSL Rover named Curiosity is designed to assess whether Mars ever had an environment able to support small life forms called microbes. Curiosity is due to land on Mars at 10:31 p.m. PDT on Aug. 5, 2012 (1:31 a.m. EDT on Aug. 6, 2012). (AP Photo/NASA, Bill Ingalls)

  • Charles Elachi, Charles Bolden, John Holdren

    In this photo provided by NASA, the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) team welcomes White House Science and Technology Advisor John Holdren, third standing from left, as he stops by to meet the landing team and to say "Go Curiosity" as NASA Administrator Charles Bolden, second from left, and Jet Propulsion Laboratory Director Charles Elachi, far left look on, Sunday, Aug. 5, 2012 at JPL in Pasadena, Calif. The MSL Rover named Curiosity is designed to assess whether Mars ever had an environment able to support small life forms called microbes. Curiosity is due to land on Mars at 10:31 p.m. PDT Sunday night. (AP Photo/NASA, Bill Ingalls)

  • MARS LANDING

    NASA Administrator Charles Bolden grasps his hands as the rover begins its decent to the surface of mars, inside the Spaceflight Operations Facility for NASA's Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity rover at Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., Sunday August 5, 2012. The Curiosity robot is equipped with a nuclear-powered lab capable of vaporizing rocks and ingesting soil, measuring habitability, and potentially paving the way for human exploration. (AP Photo/Brian van der Brug, Pool)

  • Activity lead Bobak Ferdowsi, who cuts his hair differently for each mission, works inside the Spaceflight Operations Facility for NASA's Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity rover at Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena, Calif. on Sunday, Aug. 5, 2012. The Curiosity robot is equipped with a nuclear-powered lab capable of vaporizing rocks and ingesting soil, measuring habitability, and potentially paving the way for human exploration. (AP Photo/Los Angeles Times, Brian van der Brug, Pool)

  • In this photo released by NASA, an empty jar marked "Days Until Entry" and a jar full of marbles marked "Days Since Launch" sit on a conference room table during a meeting of the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) team at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. The MSL team has been moving one marble a day since launch from jar to jar. The MSL Rover named Curiosity was designed to assess whether Mars ever had an environment able to support small life forms called microbes. Curiosity is due to land on Mars Sunday night. (AP Photo/NASA, Bill Ingalls)

  • Susan Bell, Leland Melvin, Nichelle Nichols, William

    Former NASA astronaut Leland Melvin, center, actress Nichelle Nichols the original O'Hura Star Trek character, and musician Will.i.am, right, of The Black Eyed Peas, pose with bloggers at NASA Social media event at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., on August 12, 2012, hours before the Mars rover Curiosity is due to land on the surface of Mars. The most high-tech rover NASA has ever designed was speeding toward Mars on Sunday to attempt an acrobatic landing on the planet's surface. The Curiosity rover was poised to hit the top of the Martian atmosphere at 13,000 mph. Second from left blogger and film maker Susan Bell. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)

  • June Lockhart

    Actress June Lockhart from Lost in Space and Lassie, addresses bloggers at NASA Social media event at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, on Aug. 12, 2012, hours before the Mars rover Curiosity is due to land on the surface of Mars. The most high-tech rover NASA has ever designed was speeding toward Mars on Sunday to attempt an acrobatic landing on the planet's surface. The Curiosity rover was poised to hit the top of the Martian atmosphere at 13,000 mph. If all goes according to script, it will be slowly lowered into a massive crater by cables in the final few seconds. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)

  • Alex Trebek

    Alex Trebek, host Jeopardy addresses bloggers at NASA Social media event at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, on Aug. 12, 2012, hours before the Mars rover Curiosity is due to land on the surface of Mars. The most high-tech rover NASA has ever designed was speeding toward Mars on Sunday to attempt an acrobatic landing on the planet's surface. The Curiosity rover was poised to hit the top of the Martian atmosphere at 13,000 mph. If all goes according to script, it will be slowly lowered into a massive crater by cables in the final few seconds. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)

  • Adam Steltzner

    FILE - In this file photo taken Thursday, Aug., 2012, Adam Steltzner, Mars Science Laboratory's entry, descent and landing phase leader at JPL uses a scale model to explains the Curiosity rover's Entry, Descent, and Landing (EDL) during the Mission Engineering Overview news briefing at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. Curiosity is scheduled to land on Mars Sunday night, Aug. 5, 2012. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File)