NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover may have been in service since 2011, but it’s still exploring and just transmitted a selfie with Mont Mercou in the background. At the beginning of this month, the rover approached a large rock formation that scientists dubbed “Mont Mercou” that stands around 20 feet tall. It managed to capture the outcrop in a new selfie, as well as in a pair of panoramas that provide a 3D view. Read more for a video and additional information.
This selfie isn’t just a single image, as it took 60 images captured by the Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) on the rover’s robotic arm on March 26, 2021, the 3,070th Martian day to offer the stunning view. They were then stitched together with 11 images taken by the Mastcam on the mast of the rover on March 16, 2021. For those curious, France’s Mont Mercou is located near the village of Nontron in the southeast area of the country.
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Curiosity also provided a pair of panoramas using its Mastcam on March 4, 2021, the 3,049th Martian day of the mission. By shooting one panorama from about 130 feet (40 meters) away from the outcrop, then rolling to the side and shooting another from the same distance, the rover created a stereoscopic effect similar to those seen in 3D viewfinders,” said NASA.