NASA's Curiosity Mars rover conducted a rare science experiment on the Martian surface. The rover conducted a 'wet chemistry' experiment for the second time during its seven-year schedule. After the experiment, the rover was found taking a break and clicking selfie images with the Red planet in the backdrop.
NASA Curiosity Rover Dubbed Mars Chemist
At the moment, the NASA Curiosity rover is exploring an area called 'Glen Etive' on Mars. The Glen Etive region is situated on the lower slopes of Mountain Sharp which is believed to be rich in clay minerals. The experiment conducted by NASA's Curiosity rover involved the process of dropping a drilled sample into a special solvent.
Clay is an important discovery on the Martian surface as it provides evidence of the past existence of water and is good at preserving chemical compounds. The result would help the Curiosity rover to identify carbon-containing organic molecules.
NASA Curiosity Mars Rover Clicks Selfie
After conducting the wet experiment, the rover captured a selfie by a camera placed at the end of its robotic arm. The image was stitched together by 57 separate images. The panoramic shot highlights the second time the rover has performed the chemistry experiment.
"A new selfie taken by NASA's Curiosity Mars rover is breathtaking, but it's especially meaningful for the mission's team," NASA's Paul Mahaffy from the Goddard Space Flight Center said in a statement. Looking at the selfie image, part of the Curiosity rover's upward route is visible.
Going into further analysis, the NASA Curiosity rover's selfie shows the dark contours of the Vera Rubin Ridge, about 300m behind the rover. This was the region that Curiosity left behind about a year ago. Simultaneously, one can spot the Gale Crater's floor just beyond the Ridge. This was the region that Curiosity discovered and confirmed to have harbored a lake and stream system, which might have supported life eons ago.