Curiosity Rover, Mars
Click on the above image for the interactive version.
This self-portrait of NASA's Mars rover Curiosity combines 66 exposures taken by the rover's Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) during the Sol 177th of Curiosity's work on Mars (Feb. 3, 2013).
The rover is positioned at a patch of flat outcrop called "John Klein", which was selected as the site for the first rock-drilling activities by Curiosity. The self-portrait was acquired to document the drilling site.
The rover's robotic arm is not visible in the mosaic. MAHLI, which took the component images for this mosaic, is mounted on a turret at the end of the 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 used in the mosaic. Please check out the video explanation by NASA.
At the bottom of this panorama is the hole in a rock. The drilling took place on Feb. 8, 2013, or Sol 182, Curiosity's 182nd Martian day of operations. The sample-collection hole is 0.63 inch (1.6 centimeters) in diameter and 2.5 inches (6.4 centimeters) deep. The "mini drill" test hole near it is the same diameter, with a depth of 0.8 inch (2 centimeters).
The images for full panorama obtained by the rover's 34-millimeter Mast Camera. The mosaic, which stretches about 30,000 pixels width, includes 113 images taken on Sol 170 and an additional 17 images taken on Sol 176.
Source images: NASA/JPL-Caltech
Image © Andrew Bodrov