NASA’s Curiosity rover has completed its survey of “Murray Buttes,” and is now set to venture even higher along the slopes of Mount Sharp. The intrepid rover took the opportunity to snap a selfie as it proudly stood in front of some rather dramatic Martian features.
This striking image, taken on September 17, 2016, is actually a composite of 60 individual pictures taken by the rover’s Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI). The camera and the arm are not included in the composite, which is why it looks as though a Martian inhabitant took the time to snap a pic of the four-wheeled exploratory vehicle.
The dark mesa in the background is called “M12,” and upper Mount Sharp can be seen at the top right. M12 stands about 23 feet (7 meters) above the base of the sloping rocks seen just behind the rover. For the past several weeks, Curiosity has been drilling and collecting rock powder samples in the region. Many of the pictures taken during this phase of the mission have been some of the best we’ve ever seen, revealing intricate eroded rock formations.
Click here to download wallpaper versions of the top pic.