Even Mars rovers take selfies
If you thought selfies were just a fad for humans, you were wrong. Mars’ Curiosity Rover, which has been exploring the Red Planet since 2012, just sent back its latest selfie.
The photo combines 57 images taken mid-January to display the vehicle at “Namib Dune,” where the rover was scuffing into the dune with a wheel and scooping samples of sand for laboratory analysis.
The camera used for this selfie is the Mars Hand Lens Imager, located at the end of the rover’s robotic arm, which is not included in this image. The arm’s wrist motions and turret rotations are what permitted it to acquire the array of images. It was positioned out of the shots in the images used to create this composite selfie.
Namib Dune is part of the dark-sand “Bagnold Dune Field” along the northwestern flank of Mount Sharp.
The view does not include the rover’s arm. Wrist motions and turret rotations on the arm allowed MAHLI to acquire the mosaic’s component images. The arm was positioned out of the shot in the images, or portions of images, that were used in this mosaic.
To get an idea of its dimensions, the rover’s wheels are 20 inches in diameter and about 16 inches wide.
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