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Nasa's Mars Curiosity Photographs Mount Sharp, Its Primary Destination

22/08/2013 12:56 BST | Updated 22/10/2013 10:12 BST

Nasa's Mars Curiosity rover is racing across the planet conducting "science on the go" as it heads towards Mount Sharp.

The looming mountain is the mission's primary destination where scientists hope to find information on how the martian planet's environment changed and evolved.

The five-mile journey - which began at the beginning of July- is expected to take five months.

mars

The barren landscape leading up to Mount Sharp

It won't be easy. Perilous sand dunes could trap the rover if it is not steered accurately.

On its way it is collecting samples for analysis.

Jim Erickson, Curiosity Project Manager, told Universe Today: "Curiosity has landed in an ancient river or lake bed on Mars.

"We are holding samples for drops to ChemMin and SAM (Curiosity's onboard labs) when the science team is ready for it."

Curiosity celebrated its birthday earlier this month by singing 'Happy Birthday' to itself.