Color photo captures Opportunity rover as it journeys across Mars

July 17, 2013 at 7:28 PM
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PASADENA, Calif., July 17 (UPI) -- NASA says an image from Mars orbit taken 10 years after the launch of its Mars Rover Opportunity shows the long-lived rover on its trek to a new destination.

On July 8 the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment instrument on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter captured a color image of Opportunity as it crossed relatively level ground dubbed "Botany Bay" on its way to a rise called "Solander Point," NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., reported Wednesday.

"The Opportunity team particularly appreciates the color image of Solander Point because it provides substantially more information on the terrains and traverse that Opportunity will be conducting over the next phase of our exploration of the rim of Endeavour crater," JPL Mars Science Laboratory Project Scientist Matt Golombek said.

Launched in July 2003, the indefatigable rover finished nearly two years of investigating an area called "Cape York" two months ago, JPL said, analyzing sedimentary layers that are 3 billion to 4 billion years old.

Both Cape York and Solander Point are raised portions of the rim of Endeavour Crater, which is 14 miles in diameter.

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