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NASA engineers recreate the 49ers touchdown celebration after landing on Mars




The San Francisco 49ers can be 2-9 this year, but that does not mean anyone has been watching them.

After the NASA InSight landing landed successfully on the surface of Mars on Monday, two engineers, Brooke Harper and Gene Bonfiglio, celebrated with a handshake that may seem a little familiar to 49ers fans.


Harper, a fan of the Chiefs, said they copied the celebration between 49ers receivers, Marquise Goodwin and Kendrick Bourne, after Goodwin scored a touchdown against his Chiefs in Week 3.

"We knew we were sitting together in the control room, and we thought it would be fun just for the two of us," he said. "We saw something we liked about a previous game and we imitated it."

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Bonfiglio, a fan of the Patriots, said it took weeks to perfect the handshake.

"We started to practice it and we almost broke the movie about five or six weeks ago," he said. "We had to film it in slow motion so we could see it and divide it."

The InSight lander is designed to drill the surface of Mars to help scientists study the interior of the planet.

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It landed six months to reach Mars, and it was the first ship to land on the red planet since NASA's Curiosity rover landed in 2012.

Eric Ting is a staff writer for SFGATE. Send an email to eting@sfchronicle.com and follow him on Twitter

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