While NASA’s Perseverance Rover attracted headlines after touching down on Mars in February, another rover has been hard at work on the red planet for seven years.
On Tuesday, NASA published a series of new images from the Curiosity that were taken earlier this month, one of which was a selfie.
CNET reports that past rover selfies have focused on the machines themselves, but this new photo draws attention to Martian landscape, particularly a rock formation that has been dubbed “Mont Mercou” after a mountain in France.
The official Curiosity Rover Twitter account recently posted the selfie on March 30 with the caption, “Wish you were here!”
Wish you were here! This selfie was taken in front of “Mont Mercou,” a rock formation that’s 20ft (6m) tall. It's made up of 60 images from my MAHLI camera and 11 images from my Mastcam. Look close enough to spot a new drill hole – my 30th sample to date. https://t.co/3U5ZVNyO2t pic.twitter.com/mFMVjiTCvF— Curiosity Rover (@MarsCuriosity) March 30, 2021
CNET reports that the “selfie” is actually a composite photo made from 60 images taken from the rover’s arm combined with 11 more images of its mast-mounted camera.
According to CNN, Curiosity used a drill to capture a rock sample from the formation positioned to the left of the rover in the photo. It’s the 30th sample Curiosity has collected so far.
Before Perseverance touched down on Mars a little over a month ago, Curiosity was the only active rover on the planet, CBS News reports. Perseverance and Curiosity are situated about 2,300 miles apart from each other.
According to CBS News, Perseverance is currently preparing the Ingenuity helicopter for its first flight, which is scheduled to take place in April. After that, the rover will begin searching for ancient microbial life in the soil of the Jezero crater.