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Press Release Images: Opportunity
18-Aug-2004
Bedrock in Mars' Gusev Crater Hints at Watery Past
Full Press Release
 
Drilling Holes Line Opportunity's Path
Drilling Holes Line Opportunity's Path

This image composite shows 11 holes dug by the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity's rock abrasion tool into the slopes of "Endurance Crater." The main panoramic camera image highlights more recently made holes (yellow) and the rover's path into the crater (pink). The navigation camera image to the right shows the first seven holes drilled into Endurance. Each hole is 4.5 centimeters (1.8 inches) in diameter.

Image credit: NASA/JPL/Cornell
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Signs of a Busy Rover
Signs of a Busy Rover

This image taken by the navigation camera on the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity shows the first seven holes the rover drilled into the slopes of "Endurance Crater." Starting from the uppermost pictured (closest to the crater rim) to the lowest, the holes were drilled on sols 138 (June 13, 2004), 143 (June 18), 145 (June 20), 148 (June 23), 151 (June 26), 153 (June 28) and 161 (July 7), respectively. Each hole is 4.5 centimeters (1.8 inches) in diameter.

Each of the holes has a name for the rock it is on, and for the specific target on the rock. On the rock "Tennessee," the target is "Vols;" on the rock Kentucky, the target is "Cobblehill;" on the rock "Virginia," the target is Virginia; on the rock "Ontario," the target is "London;" on the rock "Manitoba," the targets are "Grindstone" and "Kettlestone;" on the rock "Millstone," the target is "Drammensfjorden."

Image credit: NASA/JPL
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Cloudy Skies on Mars (Animation)
Cloudy Skies on Mars

This movie shows winter clouds drifting across the skies at "Endurance Crater." It consists of three images taken by the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity's panoramic camera over a period of one minute. Clouds are more common at Meridiani Planum now that winter has arrived.

Image credit: NASA/JPL/Cornell
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Ripples in the Ripples
Ripples in the Ripples

This image taken by the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity shows the dunes that line the floor of "Endurance Crater." Small-scale ripples on top of the larger dune waves suggest that these dunes may have been active in geologically recent times. The image was taken by the rover's panoramic camera on sol 198 (Aug. 14, 2004).

Image credit: NASA/JPL/Cornell
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Weird 'Endurance' Rock Ahead
Weird 'Endurance' Rock Ahead

This image taken by the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity shows a bizarre, lumpy rock dubbed "Wopmay" on the inner slopes of "Endurance Crater." Scientists say the rock's unusual texture is unlike any others observed so far at Meridiani Planum. Wopmay measures approximately 1 meter (3.3 feet) across. The image was taken by the rover's panoramic camera on sol 195 (Aug. 11, 2004). Opportunity will likely travel to this or a similar rock in coming sols for a closer look at the alien surface.

Image credit: NASA/JPL
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Trends on the Slopes of 'Endurance' - graph black
Trends on the Slopes of 'Endurance'

This graph shows how elements change in composition along the slopes of "Endurance Crater." The data were taken by the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity's alpha particle X-ray spectrometer. While chlorine levels were found to significantly increase with crater depth, magnesium and sulfur concentrations significantly decreased. Because these latter two elements decrease in parallel, they probably represent magnesium sulfate that precipitated out of water.

Image credit: NASA/JPL/Cornell/Max Planck Institute
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Trends on the Slopes of 'Endurance' - graph white
Trends on the Slopes of 'Endurance'

This graph shows how elements change in composition along the slopes of "Endurance Crater." The data were taken by the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity's alpha particle X-ray spectrometer. While chlorine levels were found to significantly increase with crater depth, magnesium and sulfur concentrations significantly decreased. Because these latter two elements decrease in parallel, they probably represent magnesium sulfate that precipitated out of water.

Image credit: NASA/JPL/Cornell/Max Planck Institute
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image for 2004/08/18

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'Blueberries' and 'Popcorn'
'Blueberries' and 'Popcorn'

This view from the microscopic imager on NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity shows a type of light-colored, rough-textured spherules scientists are calling "popcorn" in contrast to the darker, smoother spherules called "blueberries." The spherules seen here are on the part of a rock named "Bylot" indicated in a panoramic camera image [13-ZL-02-Pancam2-B202R1]. This magnified view confirmed the existence of blueberries partially coated in the popcorn material. This mosaic was assembled from four microscopic imager frames taken on sol 199 (Aug. 15, 2004).

Image credit: NASA/JPL/Cornell/USGS
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Two Types of Round Pebbles in 'Endurance'
Two Types of Round Pebbles in 'Endurance'

NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity is examining a type of rougher-textured, lighter-colored round pebbles that appear to be related to the smoother, darker spherules nicknamed "blueberries." The rover has found blueberries, which are actually gray, to be plentiful in Mars' Meridiani Planum region.

This is a false-color composite image taken with the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity's panoramic camera. It shows part of a rock called "Bylot" in the "Axel Heiberg" outcrop area low inside "Endurance Crater." A mixture of blueberries and the lighter-colored spherules, nicknamed "popcorn," lie on top of the rock. The image shows what appear to be, based on color, partially exposed blueberries inside popcorn spherules. Also visible are several irregular, gray fragments that may be pieces of blueberries scattered over the sand at the bottom of the image.

This image was generated using the camera's 750-, 530-, and 430-nanometer filters. It was taken on sol 197 (Aug. 13, 2004).

Image credit: NASA/JPL/Cornell
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Round Pebbles in 'Endurance'(With Blow-up Frame)
Round Pebbles in 'Endurance'(With Blow-up Frame)

NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity is examining a type of rougher-textured, lighter-colored round pebbles that appear to be related to the smoother, darker spherules nicknamed "blueberries." The rover has found blueberries, which are actually gray, to be plentiful in Mars' Meridiani Planum region.

This is a false-color composite image taken with the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity's panoramic camera. It shows part of a rock called "Bylot" in the "Axel Heiberg" outcrop area low inside "Endurance Crater." A mixture of blueberries and the lighter-colored spherules, nicknamed "popcorn," lie on top of the rock. The image shows what appear to be, based on color, partially exposed blueberries inside popcorn spherules. Also visible are several irregular, gray fragments that may be pieces of blueberries scattered over the sand at the bottom of the image. The yellow box indicates the portion of this view covered in an image mosaic from the rover's microscopic imager [14-ZL-03-MI1-B202R1].

This image was generated using the camera's 750-, 530-, and 430-nanometer filters. It was taken on sol 197 (Aug. 13, 2004).

Image credit: NASA/JPL/Cornell
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'Blueberries' and 'Popcorn' (With Blow-up Frame)
'Blueberries' and 'Popcorn' (With Blow-up Frame)

This view from the microscopic imager on NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity shows a type of light-colored, rough-textured spherules scientists are calling "popcorn" in contrast to the darker, smoother spherules called "blueberries." The spherules seen here are on the part of a rock named "Bylot" indicated in a panoramic camera image [13-ZL-02-Pancam2-B202R1]. This magnified view confirmed the existence of blueberries partially coated in the popcorn material. This mosaic was assembled from four microscopic imager frames taken on sol 199 (Aug. 15, 2004). The yellow rectangle indicates the portion of this view shown in a tighter view [16-ZL-05-JiffyPop1-B202R1].

Image credit: NASA/JPL/Cornell/USGS
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'Blueberries' Inside 'Popcorn'
'Blueberries' Inside 'Popcorn'

This view from the microscopic imager on NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity shows a type of light-colored, rough-textured spherules scientists are calling "popcorn" in contrast to the darker, smoother spherules called "blueberries." It is the lower-left frame of a four frame mosaic [15-ZL-04-MI2-B202R1] taken on sol 199 (Aug. 15, 2004). Blueberries and fragments of blueberries appear to be inside some of the popcorn pebbles.

Image credit: NASA/JPL/Cornell/USGS
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'Blueberries' Inside 'Popcorn' (Arrows to Berries)
'Blueberries' Inside 'Popcorn' (Arrows to Berries)

This view from the microscopic imager on NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity shows a type of light-colored, rough-textured spherules scientists are calling "popcorn" in contrast to the darker, smoother spherules called "blueberries." It is the lower-left frame of a four frame mosaic [15-ZL-04-MI2-B202R1] taken on sol 199 (Aug. 15, 2004). The red arrows indicate blueberries partially covered with popcorn material.

Image credit: NASA/JPL/Cornell/USGS
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'Blueberries' Inside 'Popcorn' (Arrows to Berries and Fragments)
'Blueberries' Inside 'Popcorn' (Arrows to Berries and Fragments)

This view from the microscopic imager on NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity shows a type of light-colored, rough-textured spherules scientists are calling "popcorn" in contrast to the darker, smoother spherules called "blueberries." It is the lower-left frame of a four frame mosaic [15-ZL-04-MI2-B202R1] taken on sol 199 (Aug. 15, 2004). The red arrows indicate blueberries partially covered with popcorn material. The yellow arrows point to something even more puzzling. These darker toned, irregularly shaped objects might be blueberry fragments emerging from the popcorn material as the pebble weathers away. It is still not clear whether all of the popcorn spherules contain blueberry material.

Image credit: NASA/JPL/Cornell/USGS
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Pebble Jammed in Rock Abrasion Tool
Pebble Jammed in Rock Abrasion Tool

After the rock abrasion tool on NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity stopped working on sol 199 (Aug. 15, 2004), rover operators used the panoramic camera to take this image the next day for help in diagnosing the problem. The tool was closer than the camera could focus on sharply, but the image does show a dark spot just left of center, which engineers have determined is likely to be a pebble jammed between the cutting-blade rotor and the wire-brush rotor. If that diagnosis is confirmed by further analysis, the tool will likely be commanded to turn the rotors in reverse to release the pebble.

Image credit: NASA/JPL/Cornell
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'Diamond' in 3-D
'Diamond' in 3-D

This 3-D, microscopic imager mosaic of a target area on a rock called "Diamond Jenness" was taken after NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity ground into the surface with its rock abrasion tool for a second time.

Opportunity has bored nearly a dozen holes into the inner walls of "Endurance Crater." On sols 177 and 178 (July 23 and July 24, 2004), the rover worked double-duty on Diamond Jenness. Surface debris and the bumpy shape of the rock resulted in a shallow and irregular hole, only about 2 millimeters (0.08 inch) deep. The final depth was not enough to remove all the bumps and leave a neat hole with a smooth floor. This extremely shallow depression was then examined by the rover's alpha particle X-ray spectrometer.

On Sol 178, Opportunity's "robotic rodent" dined on Diamond Jenness once again, grinding almost an additional 5 millimeters (about 0.2 inch). The rover then applied its Moessbauer spectrometer to the deepened hole. This double dose of Diamond Jenness enabled the science team to examine the rock at varying layers. Results from those grindings are currently being analyzed.

The image mosaic is about 6 centimeters (2.4 inches) across.

Image credit: NASA/JPL
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'Tuktoyuktuk' Up Close
'Tuktoyuktuk' Up Close

This image taken by the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity shows a target dubbed "Tuktoyuktuk" on a rock called "Inuvik" in "Endurance Crater." Opportunity dug a hole into the target with its rock abrasion tool, then captured this picture with its microscopic imager on sol 188 (Aug. 4, 2004). The image mosaic is about 6 centimeters (2.4 inches) across.

Image credit: NASA/JPL/Cornell/USGS
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Grinding 'Grindstone'
Grinding 'Grindstone'

This image taken by the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity shows a target dubbed "Grindstone" on a rock called "Manitoba" in "Endurance Crater." Opportunity dug a hole into the target with its rock abrasion tool, then captured this picture with its microscopic imager on sol 152 (June 28, 2004). The image mosaic is about 6 centimeters (2.4 inches) across.

Image credit: NASA/JPL/Cornell/USGS
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'Drammensfjorden' Up Close
'Drammensfjorden' Up Close

This image taken by the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity shows a target dubbed "Drammensfjorden" on a rock called "Millstone" in "Endurance Crater." Opportunity dug a hole into the target with its rock abrasion tool, then captured this picture with its microscopic imager on sol 162 (July 8, 2004). The image mosaic is about 6 centimeters (2.4 inches) across.

Image credit: NASA/JPL/Cornell/USGS
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'Campbell' Up Close
'Campbell' Up Close

This image taken by the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity shows a target dubbed "Campbell" on a rock called "MacKenzie" in "Endurance Crater." Opportunity dug a hole into the target with its rock abrasion tool, then captured this picture with its microscopic imager on sol 184 (July 30, 2004). The image mosaic is about 6 centimeters (2.4 inches) across.

Image credit: NASA/JPL/Cornell/USGS
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'Bylot' Up Close
'Bylot' Up Close

This image taken by the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity shows a target dubbed "Bylot" on the slopes of "Endurance Crater." Opportunity dug a hole into the target with its rock abrasion tool, then captured this picture with its microscopic imager on sol 196 (Aug. 12, 2004). The image mosaic is about 6 centimeters (2.4 inches) across.

Image credit: NASA/JPL/Cornell/USGS
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