The Rolling Stones literally rolled on Mars as NASA's InSight Rover landed

The Rolling Stones literally rolled on Mars as NASA's InSight Rover landed
NASA just named a rock on Mars after the legendary English rock band, The Rolling StonesWikimedia
  • The National Aeronautics and Space Agency (NASA) just named a rock on Mars after the English rock band, The Rolling Stones.
  • 'The Rolling Stones Rock' rolled further than any rock that has been moved by a NASA spacecraft landing on another planet.
  • The connection between NASA and The Rolling Stones goes back to 1964 when the band launched its first album.
The Rolling Stones already has a massive fan following on Earth and now they’re ready to capture an inter-galactic audience from Mars.

When the National Aeronautic and Space Administration (NASA) landed the Mars InSight Rover on the Red Planet, a lot of stones and dust went flying.

But, one stone rolled further than the rest — furthest that NASA has seen any rock roll while landing their spacecraft on another planet.

That golf ball sized rock has now been dubbed the ‘Rolling Stones Rock’ after the legendary rock band that includes Mick Jagger, Keither Richards, Charlie Watts and Ronnie Wood.


Back to 1964

The connection in history between NASA and the Rolling Stones goes back to 1964.

Around the time that Rolling Stones released their first album, NASA conducted its first successful fly-by of Mars on the Mariner 4.

"Cross pollinating science and a legendary rock band is always a good thing," said actor Robert Downey Junior, known for playing Iron Man in the Avengers series, when he made the announcement on 22 August.

Most objects in space have official names and those names can only come from the International Astronomical Union.

But every space organisation indulges in giving unofficial nicknames to rocks and other space objects.

And, the reasoning is simple — nicknames make for easier reference rather than more technical names. Not to mention that they’re just more fun.

"This is definitely a milestone in our long and eventful history. A huge thank you to everyone at NASA for making it happen," said Mick Jagger during the ‘Stones No Filter’ concert in California.

See also:
There’s a Pac-Man-shaped crater on Mars

NASA detects a quake on Mars for the very first time — using sound

Five Apollo 11 technologies that NASA still uses 50 years after the first man landed on the moon