Happy birthday to the Mars Curiosity Rover

Happy birthday to the Mars Curiosity Rover article image

The Mars Curiosity Rover turns 10 today – and fellow robots on earth are joining the celebrations.

Husqvarna, the market leader in robotic lawn mowers, is giving the Mars Curiosity Rover a birthday celebration to remember.

To mark Curiosity’s 10th anniversary on Mars, Husqvarna has updated more than 100,000 robotic lawn mowers globally to enable them to sing Happy Birthday to their curious little mate Australia will be the first country to sing leading the Happy Birthday song.

A choir of robots will then follow in a staggered wave stretching around the world to the loneliest robot in the universe – Happy Birthday Curiosity!

Curiosity is the largest and most advanced rover ever sent to Mars. On its very first birthday on Mars, it was engineered to sing Happy Birthday – to itself.

But to save on battery power, its birthdays have passed unnoticed ever since.

However, this year Husqvarna has developed an update for Automower, its robotic lawn mower, enabling it to sing Happy Birthday.

Long history of innovation

The update is available to a total of 100,000 customers Automower, of models 405X, 415X and 435X AWD. The initiative is fuelled by Husqvarna´s long history of engineering and innovation, where robotic lawn mowers have played an important role in the company's success.

“We are a large group of tech nerds and engineers working at Husqvarna and sometimes we test new technology just because it's our passion,” says Björn Mannefred, Robotics Software Manager at Husqvarna.

“We have this alarm module on the Automower robotic mower, and we started to play around with it to see if we could do something fun.

“Meanwhile we heard about the upcoming birthday of the rover on Mars and from there the idea was born. For us this is a way to pay homage to the great engineering work of NASA by letting our robotic mowers celebrate a fellow robot. Because nobody should have to sing Happy Birthday to themselves, right?”

Alarm system becomes a singing voice

The technology is based on the existing alarm signal of Automower. In this case Husqvarna uses the integration platform IFTTT to enable the mowers to sing Happy Birthday.

Husqvarna has been working with IoT and external third-party solutions for years, together with Google Home, Amazon Alexa and IFTTT.

How to join the choir

Users will be notified about the update through the Husqvarna Automower Connect app where they will be asked to install the update. If they accept, the Automower robotic mower will automatically start to sing at 12pm, 3pm and 6pm local time today around the world, as a homage to Curiosity’s 10-year anniversary on Mars.

Following Mars Curiosity Rover´s Birthday, Husqvarna will make the Happy Birthday song available to owners of the three Automower models permanently from the beginning of September, to add joy to family birthdays.

Click here to see Husqvarna´s choir of robotic mowers sing Happy Birthday.
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