Thursday, July 01, 2004

Spirit Rover Reaches the Columbia Hills on Mars

See Explanation. Clicking on the picture will download the highest resolution version available.

Spirit Rover Reaches the Columbia Hills on Mars
Credit: Mars Exploration Rover Mission, JPL, NASA

Explanation: The Spirit robotic rover on Mars has now reached the Columbia Hills on Mars. Two of the hills are shown on approach near the beginning of June. The above true-color picture shows very nearly what a human would see from Spirit's vantage point. The red color of the rocks, hills, and even the sky is caused by pervasive rusting sand. Spirit has now traveled over 3 kilometers since it bounced down onto the red planet in January. The robotic explorer, controlled and programmed remotely from Earth, is now investigating a rock called Pot of Gold. On the other side of Mars, Spirit's twin Opportunity is now inspecting unusual rocks inside a pit dubbed Endurance crater.

No comments: