The Curiosity Rover Took A Selfie In the Middle of the Dust Storm

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Not everyone can look their best while in a dust storm, but then again, not everyone is an awesome rover on Mars!

Remember the dust storm that hit Mars and the rovers on it last week? Well, Opportunity might have gone in hibernation, as it needs solar power to work, but Curiosity was feeling a bit more like posing for a great shot.

On Sunday, Seán Doran shared this image on his Twitter account. It was a selfie which the Curiosity Rover took in the middle of the dust storm. Looking at the photo, some people might say it’s a little weird. This is why…

Where’s Its ‘Selfie Stick’?

Curiosity was keeping tabs on the incoming storm which later covered an area as big as North America and Russia together. Opportunity rover no longer got sunlight to its solar panels, so it was plunged into darkness. But Curiosity hasn’t ceased its operations, because it doesn’t need sunlight to work. Curiosity rover is nuclear-powered, using a Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator so that it can be handled without the need for solar power.

Some people wondered “how the hell is Curiosity even taking this photo?”

On their Instagram page, nasajpl posted a video explaining how their rover can take these awesome selfies with no arm in the shot.

The easy answer is that the rover takes a composite shot. The arm takes several shots while rotating at 180 degrees, and it doesn’t get in front of the camera. Then, the team stitches together the shots, revealing this photo. So much effort for a selfie!

Curiosity will continue its mission, its ultimate goal being to climb Aeolis Mons (known as Mount Sharp). Until then, it will take more samples of the mountain’s walls to allow the science team to learn more about Mars soil and what it contains.

Meanwhile, it will also deliver awesome selfies!

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Andre Blair s is the lead editor for Advocator.ca. He holds a B.A. in Psychology from the University of Toronto, and a Master of Science in Public Health (M.S.P.H.) from the School of Public Health, Department of Health Administration, at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Andre specializes in environmental health, but writes on a variety of issues.


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