AN AMAZING LONG-DISTANCE REPAIR: Curiosity drills Mars rock sample for first time in two years. “After a two-year stint on the disabled list, Curiosity’s drill is working again. This week, the Mars rover successfully collected a rock sample for the first time in almost two years. Over the last year, engineers at NASA have developed a workaround drilling technique called Feed Extended Drilling, or FED, which uses the rover’s robotic arm to direct and push the drill into the ground as the drill bit spins. And last week, Curiosity engineers added percussion, or a hammering rhythm, to the FED technique.”