NASA‘s Mars rover Curiosity sent some sky photos from the Red Planet. Colorful clouds in the Martian atmosphere attracted attention in these photos.
Mars is an important target in extraterrestrial astronomy studies, and NASA’s Curiosity vehicle has recently been at the center of studies on this planet. The rover, which was sent to the Red Planet, shares many images from Mars, as well as conducting various researches.
One of the last images from Curiostiy looks like it was shot in Ürgüp. In the image created from 21 photos from the vehicle’s camera on March 19, the main point that attracts the attention of scientists is the clouds. The clouds of Mars, which has a very thin atmosphere, are quite colorful.
Mars clouds observed by Curiosity
While the image shared by NASA emerged with the combination of 21 frames from the Mars vehicle, the cloud structure on Gale Crater attracted attention. Thanks to the image obtained, an earlier prediction made by scientists was confirmed.
Scientists have predicted that such harem-like clouds may appear on Mars in the early part of each Martian year in their studies in the past. Curiosity also pointed its camera at the sky to observe these clouds. The incoming images confirmed the scientists.
“I’ve always wondered what colors would come out: reds and greens and blues and purples. It’s really cool to see things glow colorfully on Mars,” said atmospheric scientist Mark Lemmon of the Space Science Institute in Colorado.
At higher altitude than expected
On the other hand, in the predictions made by scientists, it was predicted that Mars clouds would appear at lower altitudes. Usually, the clouds passing over Curiosity are expected to be completely filled with ice and to be about 60 kilometers above the Martian surface.
NASA did not make a statement about the altitude of the clouds in the image. The clouds in the agency’s images consist of frozen carbon dioxide, also known as dry ice. Sunlight reflecting off these clouds causes glare. However, it should be noted that scientists have not made a definite statement on this issue.