View the NASA rover’s images, including self-portraits, from the Red Planet.
This picture provided by NASA on Monday shows a view of the third and fourth trenches made by the 1.6-inch-wide scoop on NASA's Mars rover Curiosity in October. The image was acquired by the Mars Hand Lens Imager on Oct. 31 and shows some of the details regarding the properties of the Rocknest wind drift sand. The upper surface of the drift is covered by coarse sand grains approximately 0.02 to 0.06 inches, which are somewhat cemented to form a thin crust about 0.2 inches thick. Beneath the crust surface is finer sand, which is darker brown compared with the dust on the surface. The left end of each trough wall shows alternating light and dark bands, indicating that the sand inside the drift is not completely uniform. This banding might result from different amounts of infiltrated dust, chemical alteration or deposition of sands of slightly different color. AFP/Getty Images Buy Photo