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August 21, 2015

NASA's Curiosity rover snaps selfies on Mars

The camera was mounted at the end of the rover's robotic arm

Science NASA
Mars Malin Space Science Systems /NASA

The scene combines dozens of images taken by Curiosity's Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) on Aug. 5, 2015, during the 1,065th Martian day, or sol, of the rover's work on Mars.

NASA has shared some striking selfies captured by its Curiosity Mars rover while on Mars.

The image, shown above, is a combination of shots taken by the rover on Aug. 5, 2015, its 1,065th Martian day, and pieced together as a portrait. The images were captured using a hand lens imager that was mounted onto the rover’s robotic arm (no selfie stick needed.)

According to NASA, the portrait shows the vehicle above the "Buckskin" rock target, where the mission collected its seventh drilled sample, in the "Marias Pass" area of lower Mount Sharp.

 Curiosity drilled the hole at Buckskin during Sol 1060 (July 30, 2015). Two
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patches of pale, powdered rock material pulled from Buckskin are visible in this scene, in front of the rover. The patch closer to the rover is where the sample-handling mechanism on Curiosity's robotic arm dumped collected material that did not pass through a sieve in the mechanism. Sieved sample material was delivered to laboratory instruments inside the rover. The patch farther in front of the rover, roughly triangular in shape, shows where fresh tailings spread downhill from the drilling process. The drilled hole, 0.63 inch in diameter, is at the upper point of the tailings.
The rover is facing northeast, looking out over the plains from the crest of a 20-foot hill that it climbed to reach the Marias Pass area.  The upper levels of Mount Sharp are visible behind the rover, while Gale Crater’s northern rim dominates the horizon on the left and right of the mosaic.

More information about Curiosity is online at http://www.nasa.gov/msl and http://mars.jpl.nasa.gov/msl/.

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