Sky crane touchdown system lowers Mars rover "Curiosity" onto surface, artist rendering provided by NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory
President Barack Obama says NASA's successful mission to put a robotic rover on Mars is an "unprecedented feat of technology."
In a statement issued Monday shortly after the rover Curiosity landed, Obama said "Tonight, on the planet Mars, the United States of America made history."
He says the feat, which gives the space agency a much-needed boost, proves that even the longest odds are no match for American ingenuity and determination.
The president says the mission, which cost taxpayers $2.5 billion, shows that American preeminence "depends on continuing to invest wisely in the innovation, technology, and basic research that has always made our economy the envy of the world."
Obama also congratulated the NASA workers "who made this remarkable accomplishment a reality."
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