Curiosity Rover Snaps Photos of Comet Siding Spring, Giant Sunspot and Mars-shine

It's not much, but it's the clearest view taken by NASA's Curiosity Rover of C/2013 A1 Siding Spring as it passed near Mars on October 19th. The comet is the fuzzy streak moving from right to left. Click for a full-sized view. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS/TAMU

It’s not much, but it’s the clearest view taken by NASA’s Curiosity Rover of C/2013 A1 Siding Spring as it passed near Mars on October 19th. The comet is the fuzzy streak moving from right to left. Click to enlarge. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS/TAMU

NASA’s Curiosity Rover spends most of its time staring at the ground, but like humans, it looks up once in a while too. As reported earlier, NASA ground controllers pointed the rover’s Mast Camera (mastcam) skyward to shoot a series of photos of Comet Siding Spring when it passed closest to the Red Planet on October 19th. Until recently, noise-speckled pictures available on the raw image site confounded interpretation. Was the comet there or wasn’t it? In these recently released versions, the fuzzy intruder is plain to see, tracking from right to left across the field of view. (…)
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© Bob King for Universe Today, 2014. |
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