Curiosity rover captures the highest resolution panorama of Mars’ rugged landscape.
The Curiosity Rover is NASA’s mission to Mars. It landed in August 2012 in the Gale Crater. Its mission is to investigate if the Red Planet ever had the proper conditions for microbial (single-celled) life to survive.
This crater is special because it has a tall mountain in the middle. The mountain has many layers of rock. Each layer is made of different minerals from different time periods. These minerals could tell scientists about the history of water on Mars.
Why is the Rover in the news again?
Recently the spacecraft used its camera to create the largest and sharpest wide-angle photo of the Mars landscape.
What does this mean? The rover has taken approximately 1200 individual images over a period of 4 days. They have stitched the images into a composite final image. This image is so clear because it contains 1.8 billion pixels of the Martian landscape. You can zoom in and see details in the background like never before. One can see the rim of the Gale crater and the Slangpos Crater.