Why Nasa is using 3D specs to guide the Mars rover

Last updated at 08:32
The team who are in charge of the Curiosity Rover pictured on their first day of working from home

To try and stop the spread of the coronavirus, lots of people have left their offices and have started working from home instead.

That means all sorts of workers, including the scientists who work at Nasa.

They've had to find ways of doing their important jobs from home - like controlling the Curiosity rover that's on Mars right now.

The main aim of the rover mission is to find out if Mars has ever had the conditions to support life.

And they've figured out a way to help control the rover straight from their living rooms!

3d-glasses-kids-cinema.Getty Images
The glasses that Nasa are using are similar to the ones you might wear at the cinema!

Normally the team use high-tech goggles to look at 3D photos of the terrain on Mars and use that information to decide where it's safe for the rover to go.

But the goggles don't work away from Nasa HQ - so they've started using old red-blue/green 3D glasses instead! And apparently they work nearly as well!

The glasses are a bit like the ones you'd wear in the cinema if you were going to see a film in 3D.

Computer image of the Mars rover CuriosityPA
This is a computer image of the Mars rover Curiosity

Nasa said: "Although not as immersive or comfortable as the goggles, they work just as well for planning drives and arm movements."

Curiosity science operations team chief Carrie Bridge said: "It's classic, textbook Nasa... We're presented with a problem and we figure out how to make things work. Mars isn't standing still for us - we're still exploring."

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