TRANSPORT services in Glasgow are at a near stand-still.

Trains and busses are largely empty, with the exception for some key workers, and our roads are quieter than they’ve ever been,

But approximately 34 million miles away, the Mars rover Curiosity is humming its way across the ‘M8’ from Edinburgh, to its very own ‘Dear Green Place’ in the Red Planet.

Glasgow Times: (NASA/JPL-Caltech)(NASA/JPL-Caltech)

The rover – which landed on Mars in August 2012 – is on its way to a new drill site, which the team at NASA have named after Scotland’s largest city.

Roger Wiens, a geochemist ­involved in tracking Curiosity, ­explained in a mission update: “The Curiosity rover is about 20 metres lower in elevation than it’s highest point near the ‘Edinburgh’ drill hole.

Glasgow Times: The rover driving 'towards Glasgow' (NASA/JPL-Caltech)The rover driving 'towards Glasgow' (NASA/JPL-Caltech)

"With the commands being uplinked today, the rover should arrive at the next candidate drill site.

“The team has selected the name ‘Glasgow’ for this candidate drill site – it is the name of the largest city in ­Scotland.”

It’s thought the Glasgow drill location will be to examine the last major known geological unit to be sampled in the area, which the rover has been exploring for the last 450 days.

Glasgow Times: (NASA/JPL-Caltech)(NASA/JPL-Caltech)

It’s not uncommon for Martian geological areas and features being named after places on Earth.

In January 2018, the rover was exploring parts of an area named after Torridon in the Scottish Highlands.

Glasgow Times: (NASA/JPL-Caltech)(NASA/JPL-Caltech)

Five years earlier, in October 2012, a small community in Glenelg in the west Highland’s marked ­Curiosity’s arrival at its namesake with a ceilidh.

Areas in Shetland, Arran and Oban have also been honoured.