Martian rover Curiosity has sent an interesting picture to Earth. The photo shows a bizarre stone arch.
Curiosity is a third-generation rover designed to explore Gale Crater on Mars as part of NASA’s Mars Science Laboratory mission. It is a self-contained chemical laboratory several times larger and heavier than previous rovers.
Curiosity is currently exploring Gale Crater, home to an impressive mountain called Mount Sharp. It was here that the vehicle landed in 2012. In the array of images that the rover transmits to Earth, a small stone arch was discovered, the height of which is only one and a half dozen centimeters – a bizarre trail of weathering of the rock. Last week, the rover took several close-ups of the object, and scientist Kevin Gill has folded the images into a mosaic.
“What’s going on here? Is it a cat on a jet ski, or what? ” – wrote a NASA engineer on Twitter. The picture was commented on by Abigail Freeman, an expert on planetary geology at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. She added that the landscape on Mars does at times take on extremely unusual shapes.
Gale is an impact crater on Mars named after Walter Frederick Gale, an amateur astronomer who observed Mars in the late 19th century and described channels on it. Its diameter is about 154 km, and its age is 3.5–3.8 billion years.