“I think I can! I think I can!”

From Astronomy Pic of the Day comes a tale about The Little Mars Rover That Could!

Nereus Crater on Mars
Credit: Mars Exploration Rover Mission, JPL, NASA; Image Processing: Kenneth Kremer

Explanation: It was along the way. The robotic rover Opportunity currently rolling across the Meridiani Plain on Mars has a destination of Endeavour Crater, a large crater over 20 kilometers across which may yield additional clues about the cryptic past of ancient Mars. Besides passing open fields of dark soil and light rock, Opportunity has chanced upon several interesting features. One such feature, pictured above in a digitally stitched and horizontally compressed panorama, is Nereus Crater, a small crater about 10 meters across that is surrounded by jagged rock. Besides Nereus, Opportunity recently also happened upon another unusual rock — one that appears to be the third large meteorite found on Mars and the second for Opportunity during only this trip. Opportunity has been traveling toward Endeavour Crater for over a year now, and if it can avoid ridged rocks and soft sand along the way, it may reach Endeavour sometime next year.

 

See Explanation.  Clicking on the picture will download  the highest resolution version available.

 

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About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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2 Responses to “I think I can! I think I can!”

  1. CarleighS says:

    That just makes me happy. The thought of the little mechanical thing trudging around Mars, taking pictures, and us, the vicarious observers of an impossible holiday abroad.

  2. Carleigh: Yes, indeed! It is an amazing story. I always enjoy the reports of these intrepid little martian crawlers.