News / Science & Technology

    NASA Releases 360-degree View of Mars

    FILE - This self-portrait of NASA's Curiosity Mars rover shows the vehicle at "Namib Dune," where the rover's activities included scuffing into the dune with a wheel and scooping samples of sand for laboratory analysis.
    FILE - This self-portrait of NASA's Curiosity Mars rover shows the vehicle at "Namib Dune," where the rover's activities included scuffing into the dune with a wheel and scooping samples of sand for laboratory analysis.
    VOA News

    The U.S. space agency, NASA, has released a stunning 360-degree video of the surface of the planet Mars.

    The video was taken by the Curiosity rover’s Mast Camera on Dec. 18.

    “This view of the downwind face of ‘Namib Dune’ on Mars covers 360 degrees, including a portion of Mount Sharp on the horizon,” according to NASA's description of the video. “The site is part of the dark-sand ‘Bagnold Dunes’ field along the northwestern flank of Mount Sharp.”

    NASA says the bottom of the dune nearest the rover is about 7 meters from the camera. The center of the scene is toward the east; both ends are toward the west.

    A color adjustment has been made so that rocks and sand appear approximately as they would appear under Earth's sunlit sky.

    "The mission's examination of dunes in the Bagnold field, along the rover's route up the lower slope of Mount Sharp, is the first close look at active sand dunes anywhere other than Earth," says NASA.

    The car-sized rover has been on Mars since August 6, 2012.

    Here's the video:

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