Here are some photographs of the Mars Rover that have been taken by NASA. There is everything from rare minerals to weird shapes that are on the surface. We can see what we as humans can accomplish by contributing to science and collaborating with each other. All of these photographs are taken by the Mars Rover and the satellite orbiting the planet.
Wheels of the Rover
The trends of the Mars Rover are very important because of the terrain on Mars, without the support of these the rover wouldn’t be able to go anywhere. Mars mostly has a sandy and rocky environment like the deserts on Earth, this makes it harder to navigate with a land vehicles. As you can see on this photo, the trend has been damaged from the roughed terrain.
A photograph of Mars from above looking at the rough terrain taken on March 18, 2015. This area is known as Garden City for the way the rocks are making random formations, you can also see different colors in the rock because of the minerals left over from what ever life was on here. This photo was most likely taken from the satellite or on its way down to the surface.
The Rover’s Map
During its exploration of Mars the rover can capture aspects such as height, terrain, and even temperatures. These calculations can me put on a map to show what exactly the surface looks like. In this photo you can see the progression of the rover, showing where it is travels and marking its way as it goes. Millions of dollars were spent for the rover to rely on itself and calculate the atmosphere of the planet.
Here is a photo of a drilling sample that the Mars Rover took out of the surface. You can notice that the sand that from underneath is a different color, it is believed that it is because of a temperature difference in the ground. The rover is armed with everything it needs to take samples and analyze it on the spot, this was one of the main reasons that NASA sent it up.
e minerals on the surface of Mars taken by the Curiosity Rover. One of the main reasons why this rover was sent up by NASA was to determine if there was any life on Mars or if there still is. Many of these type of photos were taken to examine the minerals that look similar to Earth henceforth discovering life on the planet.
During the expedition on Mars there was a malfunction that left one of the rover’s arm to stay in the same position for seven days. This was caused by a short circuit which was later on fixed but this malfunction didn’t limit the rover to doing other experiments luckily not wasting anytime. There were a couple of other complications on the mission but nothing to stop the rover from completing its mission.
A photograph of the Curiosity’s drill right after it finished drilling to mark Telegraph Peak on February 25,2015. NASA drilled many holes to collect different samples of rock and from that they found micro-organisms that contained elements of nitrogen, sulfur, hydrogen, phosphorus and carbon which are key to making life. This rover was expected to last one Martian year or about 98 weeks which it successfully did.
Curiosity captures a photograph of the dunes of Mars. This looks like there was signs of water by the way the dunes are shaped but scientist found out it was from atmospheric winds. Mars looks a lot like Earth in some ways especially our deserts around the world.
Signs of Water
This photograph brought some attention to NASA because of the way these rocks are aligned. These rocks are sedimentary rocks which are piled together mostly seen at the bottom of lakes on Earth. Scientists are still puzzled about this and are looking to do more research once we put people on Mars.
A map showing the Rover’s path to test for hydration patterns which indicate if there is any moisture in that particular area. As you can see some spots were showing high points of hydration which could mean there was water on the planet before. It is already determined that there was micro life on Mars the question is if there was more.
The Curiosity taking a photo of its journey through the Junda Striations an area on Mars. The rover was loaded with all the up to date tools such as high resolution cameras, seven foot arms to pick up materials and many other science experiments. With these instruments they were able to identify organics on the Surface in 2014.
This rover was powered by a radioisotope thermometric generator and lithium batteries in other words a nuclear powered battery. This was the majority of the budget and was necessary for the mission to complete so many tasks. The life of the rover was suppose to last 14 years but with all the energy they would be wasting on experiments it only lasted one Martian year.
Here is more evidence that Mars had lakes, there are more sedimentary rocks here and the way they are positions is that in a way of a lake. There are many explanations that are pointing toward water on Mars and scientists are certain that there once was. Many think that Mars was like our planet with oceans and green lands but the question is still in the air.
The rover took off out of Cape Canaveral, Florida on November 26, 2011 and landed on Mars on August 6, 2012. This was the projected time but when it came to landing it was different, this event was called the “Seven Minutes of Terror”. The reason for the name was that it took seven minutes for the signal to get back from Earth so during the landing there was a malfunction which led everyone to worry. Fortunately all was well and the rover landed safely, control room went crazy when they found out.
A photograph of a strange looking object that appears to look like a spoon, scientists have concluded that it is a rock formed by winds to give it that strange look. There have been a lot of strange objects on Mars this is mostly because no one has ever been here so nothing has been touched for ever. The rover takes pictures of all of it’s surroundings to get a feel of what it is really like on Mars.
Scientists use these three different types of photo coloring to help determine what is on the planet. With the unprocessed color you can pick up darker objects on the picture and you can see the terrain much brighter. The white balanced color helps pick up objects that are white and are able to see things further.
Here is an image of the Rover taking a shot of the valley. The Rover was able to travel about 650 feet per day while being able to do science experiments on the way. Many tools were used on the mission including two spectrometers, a microscopic imager, particle-collection magnets and a rock abrasion tool to split and examine rocks.
Methane on Mars
This is the photo taken during the discovery of the Rover finding methane gas. This is a big question to NASA’s scientists mainly because where there is methane there is life. There are other theories saying that the methane was concentrated on the surface from an asteroid and since the Rover disturbed the surface, the methane was released.
This was a test run to make sure everything would work properly. This drill has not had a problem since it has been on Mars. When NASA was drilling they mostly looked for frozen water and dormant life, they would drill about 200 meters each time to get an accurate reading.
Friendly Green Planet
A very surreal image of the Earth being looked at from the planet Mars. At the closest point between Mars and Earth is about 33.9 million miles away from each other and would take around six months to travel there if we had human transportation and six months on the way back. Another factor is that the astronauts would have to wait until the planets aligned again to journey back which would add another eighteen to twenty months.
This is an image of the Amargosa Valley, the Rover had a hard time getting up to this valley. It was very steep and rocky which made it difficult for the Rover to travel up. This is a beautiful image of the redness of Mars, the different shades and the distant rocky hills. This was a perfect place to harvest rocks and examine the the environments.
Mars at Night
Image of the Rover traveling at night in area know as Yellowknife Bay which was know for soft sand and rocky surfaces. The Rover had to overcome many obstacles but luckily the scientists studied the surface and knew which way was most accessible. The Rover has six independent wheels and suspension that allow it to travel over rough terrain.
The Red Planet
A beautiful image of Mars captured in whole. You can see how magnificent the Red Planet is, this is one of the brightest planets that you can see from Earth aside from Jupiter. There are many scars on the surface some are from impacts and others are from earthquakes.
The dry conditions on Mars can bee seen in this photo and the wind patterns also. You can see how the rock and sand has formed looking like winds stirring up the surface. Most of the planet looks like this and doesn’t change much other than having more sand and rocks.
A selfie of the Rover on the surface, this is a very clear image being able to see all the surroundings. Unfortunately this rover will be left on Mars forever never coming back to its home. Hopefully we will be able to send humans up to Mars to keep this as a relic of history.
An image of the Rover’s tracks, the circles are from the Rover observing the surrounding area. There are six wheels on the Rover that help it maneuver through the soft sand. It is amazing how far and long this Rover travels for and that no one is on the planet, everything is controlled from Earth with a seven minute delay.
Curiosity is not the only Rover on the surface of Mars. There are two others, Spirit and Opportunity. While Spirit is not in operation any longer, Opportunity has been running since the year 2004 and is still be used till this day. NASA was the only space agency that was able to operate a rover on Mars, Russia was able to send one out there but when it landed it lost connection.
Another image of the rover taking a selfie, this was taken when they were drilling for the seventh time. Some interesting facts about Mars are is that a year on Mars is 687 days but a day on the Red Planet only lasts 40 minutes more than one on Earth. And if we were to go to Mars we would weigh much lighter than we do on Earth.
High Vantage Point
The Rover would find vantage points like this to be able to see the area around it and see where its next course was. Its amazing all the thought and power that went into this machine that made it able to accomplish tasks like these to make the mission that much easier.
An image of some Mars sand dunes. There are sand dunes almost everywhere on Mars and this was a big obstacle for the Rover. Most of the mission of the Rover was avoiding the big dunes because the Rover was not designed to go up such steep inclines and there was no scientific reason to either.
Another image of the Rover on top of the vantage point to over look the valley on all sides. In this area you can tell it is hazier than other areas. Mars sometimes has dust storms and at times it covers the whole planet, this also decreases solar panel output, luckily the Rover doesn’t need solar to be powered because its nuclear powered.
Image of the Rover scooping up some sand to analyze. This was what exactly the Rover went to Mars to do and it still is in operation to this day. It recently put itself into safe mode for a couple of days but engineers have brought it out of safe mode and is now operating. Engineers found out that it was a malfunction in one of the modes to communicate, now they are not using that mode to avoid problems. The Rover will continue to operate for as long as it can run and hopefully gather more evidence that there is life on Mars.