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In-situ Exploration and Sample Return: Entry, Descent, and Landing

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This black and white image shows the pockmarked martian surface that Spirit encountered on its descent to Gusev Crater. The picture is taken at an altitude of 1,433 meters (about 4,701 feet). These images help the onboard software to minimize the lander's horizontal velocity before its bridal is cut, and it falls freely to the surface of Mars.

This image, taken by the descent image motion estimation system (DIMES) camera located on the bottom of the Mars Exploration Rover Spirit's lander, shows a view of Gusev Crater as the lander descends to Mars. The picture is taken at an altitude of 1,433 meters (about 4,701 feet). Numerous small impact craters can be seen on the surface of the planet. These images help the onboard software to minimize the lander's horizontal velocity before its bridal is cut, and it falls freely to the surface of Mars.

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