Marsraker.

If you have experienced nothing that amazes you today, then understand this: there is a portable, automated science lab hurtling towards Mars right now.

The new Mars rover Curiosity left Earth three days ago, and presuming it lands according to plan, it will begin to roam the surface of Mars in a charming, WALL-E fashion, collecting mineral samples and analyzing them. It also, in fact, has a weapons-grade laser attached to it that is primarily purposed with vaporizing rocks, but might also come in handy should there be trouble with any tiny, sneaker-wearing, Roman-helmeted supervillains.

Below is an artist’s animation of the launch, landing, and activities of Curiosity. No word on whether it will do egregious harm to any cats it encounters.

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