Our Little Guy, the Curiosity Rover, Takes a Self-Portrait on Mars

More

Humans somehow sent this advanced machine to another planet, and here it is in high-res glory.

pia16239_c-br2.jpg

NASA

Among all the pictures of Martian soil, riverbeds, and vistas, the machine that NASA sent to the planet tends to disappear from the scene, a stage-hand whose work takes center stage, but whose physicality is invisible. Soon after Curiosity landed on Mars, it sent back a small picture of its face, which Alexis said appeared to be giving the camera (mounted on the end of an extendable, rotatable arm) a bit of a wink. (It's basically impossible not to personify the little rover, with its personality-laced Twitter feed and WALL-E-esque appearance.)

Now, two months later, comes the rover's most high-definition, detailed self-portrait yet, composed of 55 different images. In the picture, the rover is sitting at Rocknest, a point in Mars' Gale Crater. Four holes in the soil are visible where the rover has scooped up soil for analysis. The slope of Mount Sharp is visible in the background to the right. Click through to "embiggen" the image.*


*Quotation marks added in honor of Rick Jones' comment below.

Jump to comments
Presented by

Rebecca J. Rosen is a senior editor at The Atlantic, where she oversees the Business Channel. She was previously an associate editor at The Wilson Quarterly.

Get Today's Top Stories in Your Inbox (preview)

What Is the Greatest Story Ever Told?

A panel of storytellers share their favorite tales, from the Bible to Charlotte's Web.


Elsewhere on the web

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register. blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

The Death of Film

You'll never hear the whirring sound of a projector again.

Video

How to Hunt With Poison Darts

A Borneo hunter explains one of his tribe's oldest customs: the art of the blowpipe

Video

A Delightful, Pixar-Inspired Cartoon

An action figure and his reluctant sidekick trek across a kitchen in search of treasure.

Video

I Am an Undocumented Immigrant

"I look like a typical young American."

Video

Why Did I Study Physics?

Using hand-drawn cartoons to explain an academic passion

Writers

Up
Down

More in Technology

Just In