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NAU Professor Reselected And Funded For Mars’ Curiosity Rover Project

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Northern Arizona University’s Department of Astronomy and Planetary Science Associate Professor Christopher Edwards, has been re-selected as a participating scientist by NASA to continue his research on various rover operations. Back in 2011, NASA’s Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity Rover was sent to Mars and arrived in 2012 to explore the possibility of life on Mars for microbial life forms. Edwards had already been working on the MSL team funded through a grant that allowed him to build the Mars Rover Operations and Analysis Laboratory on NAU’s campus where students can control day-to-day functions of the rover. Edwards was re-selected by NASA and awarded 325-thousand dollars for the next three years to continue growing the rover operations while also expanding geological research. Edwards and his team will continue with their original objective of investigating the sedimentary rocks of Gale Crater on Mars, as well as link data from the rover to orbital data collected by spacecrafts to better understand how Mars’ rocks were formed.