NASA's Curiosity Rover has celebrated its ninth anniversary on the Red Planet, marking its almost a decade stay on the neighbor's surfaces to study and provide Intel to Earth. The celebration is extended to its audience, the people, by sharing a panoramic photo of the Martian surface. 

And while it seems like a computer renders, it is indeed the beauty of Mars. 

NASA Curiosity Rover sends Panoramic Photo of Mars

NASA Mars Curiosity Rover celebrates 9th Anniversary
(Photo : NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS)
NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover used its Mast Camera, or Mastcam, to capture this 360-degree view near “Rafael Navarro Mountain” on July 3, 2021, the 3,167th Martian day, or sol, of the mission. Stitched together from 129 individual images, the panorama has been white-balanced so that the colors of the rock materials resemble how they would appear under daytime lighting conditions on Earth. A craggy hump that stretches 450 feet (137 meters) tall, the geologic feature is located on Mount Sharp in northwest Gale Crater.

Happy 9th year in Mars, Curiosity rover, and it was indeed a great run for you, spanning almost a decade in existence and venturing the neighboring planet alone. The anniversary of NASA's Curiosity is a celebration like no other, as it went on a hike on a mountain on Mars, which is called the "Rafael Navarro Mountain." 

The terrain is breathtaking, and is literally out of this world, as it shows the brown rock surface and reddish glare of Mars' atmosphere filled with iron elements. The location is special, particularly because it shows a mix of enriched clay minerals, along with salty minerals that were dubbed as "sulfates." 

What makes it more interesting is that the surface shows signs or pieces of evidence that Mars once had water in it and that these were carried from one place to another thanks to the water. 

Mars was once a water-rich or "wet" planet which can implicate that it was once a habitable environment, and has been changed by a massive event. 

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Curiosity Rover Explores the Rafael Navarro Mountain

The image by Curiosity was sent over last August 17, and it was via the orbiting spacecraft that received the photo from the rover. It explored the Rafael Navarro mountain, and it was a mission from July 3, which had stitched over 129 images into the said panoramic photo.

The mission of Curiosity is to learn as much as it can from the Red Planet, and that is what it exactly did, for the past nine years since its first arrival in 2012. 

Soon, humans would be Martian residents, as NASA aims to simulate life on the Red Planet, with 3D models here on Earth. 

NASA Mars 

Curiosity's nine-year stint on Mars has shown that it has done a lot for NASA and the discovery of Mars for humans. The rover has already dug 32 holes on the Red Planet which is a way for it to collect rock samples and study its components to identify the surface and Mars' actual present elements. 

The rover arrived in 2012 at the Gale Crater, and it explored the region, particularly "Mount Sharp" which has an eight-kilometer climb on its hillside. 

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Written by Isaiah Richard

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