NASA’s Perseverance Rover Captures 360-degree View of Mars’ Jezero Crater In Recent Footage(video)

NASA’s Perseverance rover completed its 1,000 Martian days, or Sols on the red planet on December 12, 2023. NASA celebrated the milestone by releasing a 360-degree mosaic of the rover’s current location on Mars.

The agency also released a video describing the scene of the rover, and Perseverance project scientist Ken Farley narrated the scenes to give a more detailed clue about Jezero Crater to the viewers. The composite image is made of 993 individual images captured by the rover’s Mastcam-Z instrument on Nov. 3, Nov. 4, and Nov. 6 last year.

The captured images also include about 2.38 billion pixels. The image reveals the real natural colors on Mars as captured by the camera. However, the image in the view was adjusted to Earth-like lighting.

“The adjustment allows mission scientists to use their everyday experience to interpret the landscape,” NASA reveals.

What You Should Know About Jezero Crater as explored by NASA’s perseverance rover

Scientific exploration of Jezero Crater has shown that a river once flowed into an ancient lake about 3.5 billion years in that landscape. Scientists relied on the rover’s sophistication to study the geology of the crater and also advance the search for past signs of microbial life.

Currently, Perseverance is exploring the part of Jezero Crater named “Airey Hill.” Scientists believe that the landscape within this region shows signs of water. The flat, light-colored rocks were possibly moved to the banks of the slightly flowing river, while the massive rocks were lightly deposited by a strong flood occurrence.

One of the strange rocky platforms within this region has captured the attention of the Perseverance team. They think that it might have existed as the remnant of old lava flow.

“Lab equipment on Earth can accurately measure when a volcanic rock was formed, so if we can return a sample of this lava to Earth in the future, we may know when and for how long water flowed into Jezero,” Farley says in the video.

NASA’s Perseverance rover has previously studied the floor of Jezero Crater before moving through the sediments of the river delta. The team plans to move it “upstream” to a region where the river created a canyon in the crater rim. After that, the rover will climb upwards to a natural ramp to the rim on its own.

“One tempting target is these light-colored rocks partway up the rim,” says Farley. “They may have interacted with hot water in a hydrothermal environment – another exciting place to hunt for evidence of past life.”

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