Recent activity on Mars is provided by NASA’s Curiosity rover, celebrating quite the milestone: 9 years on our planetary neighbour!
The rover offers us a tour on a Martian mountain, which is quite surreal and intriguing. The location, however, hides more than meets the eye, and Curiosity is ready to explore more.
Here is what you need to know.
Mount Sharp Tour: Curiosity on Mars
As the rover climbs Mount Sharp, its Mastcam captures every detail, revealing quite the scenery. It’s hard to imagine what it’s like, but thanks to Curiosity’s new video, we feel closer to Mars than ever.
The mountain is 8-kilometer-tall (5-mile-tall) within the 154-kilometer-wide (96-mile-wide) basin of Mars’ Gale Crater. The location is quite exciting because Curiosity is between an area filled with clay minerals and one rich in salty minerals (sulfates).
But, what makes Mount Sharp genuinely intriguing, as you can see below, it’s the fact that it resembles some landscapes here on Earth:
Abigail Freeman, Curiosity’s deputy project scientist at NASA’s JPL, explains:
“The rocks here will begin to tell us how this once-wet planet changed into the dry Mars of today, and how long habitable environments persisted even after that happened.”
More details about Curiosity’s location
Currently, there’s winter at the rover’s location. The skies are a bit dust-free, displaying a clear view for us, all the way down until Gale Crater’s ground.
As previously said, Mount Sharp’s layers in this region may unveil how the ancient environment within the crater dried up over time. Investigating the process up close it’s a major goal for Curiosity’s mission.
Of course, there’s more to see on the road ahead, but so far, Curiosity has proved it has it all for 9 years!
Now, the rover has already started up a path between ‘Rafael Navarro Mountain,’ and a tall structure, taller than a four-story building. How intriguing is that?