Rover Curiosity has sent to Earth the first color photographs of the Red Planet. The color image clearly depicts the visible horizon with mountainous terrain and desert expanses, bathed in natural light. Also the rover has sent a short video clip showing the northern wall of crater Gale, where Curiosity landed.
Prior to this, a few black and white photographs were sent to Earth. Quality of images, however, left much to be desired. One of the photographs released by NASA showed a deserted rocky landscape of sand color with reddish tint. Scientists at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena, California attribute the poor quality of this image to dust cover accumulated on camera during landing. NASA says that as soon as the device is fully tuned to work, the quality obtained will be superb, reports USA Today.
During the next week, rover will start sending images of the environment, as well as footage from the bottom of surveillance cameras installed at the wheels. This is being done to ensure that analysts in the world excluded the existence of any threats prior to movement of the research unit.
After this, all the 17 cameras onboard Curiosity will be switched into service to get more and more information from the Red Planet.
But even the first pictures of Mars depict it the way humanity had never seen before. NASA designer Bobby Brown said that now we are observing the moves of Curiosity over Mars and do not see any obstacles, everything is going well, it’s wonderfully designed machine.
All the systems of rover, which resembles the size of an ordinary passenger car on Earth, will be commissioned within the next month.
Mars Curiosity Landing Video from MSL
Diameter of the crater Gale, where the rover is located at the moment, is 154 kilometers. Crater is comparable in size to the American states of Connecticut and Rhode Island combined.
NASA scientists believe that in crater Gale they have a high probability of detecting the existence of conditions for life at the level of micro-organisms. Here, as expected, there are deposits of so-called phyllosilicates – sheet silicates, formed from igneous rocks by prolonged contact with water.
Instruments mounted on Mars rover will operate in temperatures ranging from minus 90 to zero degrees Celsius. It must pass over the surface of Mars for about 20 kilometers. Main objective of mission Curiosity is to try to answer one of the most interesting questions: Is there life on Mars?
Powered by Facebook Comments