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NASA's Mars rover Opportunity has Arrived at the Giant Crater Endeavour

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posted on Aug, 11 2011 @ 03:09 PM
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NASA's Mars rover Opportunity has finally arrived at the giant crater Endeavour, after nearly three years of intrepid driving across the surface of the Red Planet.




The golf cart-sized rover made landfall at its destination yesterday (Aug. 9) when it pulled up to a vista called Spirit Point on the rim of Endeavour crater, NASA officials announced today. Endeavour is a vast scar in Martian surface that is about 14 miles (22 kilometers) across.

The 7-year-old Opportunity has been aiming for Endeavour crater since mid-2008, when it left a smaller crater (called Victoria) after a two-year pit stop. The aging rover is expected to spend years at Endeavour, if it lasts that long, in order to study rocks at the site that have never been seen before.



At Endeavour crater, scientists are hoping to find much older rocks than those examined by Opportunity during its first seven years on the Red Planet. Arvidson said Opportunity will likely not enter Endeavour crater, though it has explored the interiors of big Martian craters in the past. The interior of Endeavour looks to contain rocks made of the same material the rover has seen before. The rim of the crater, however, is another story entirely. The rocks there are older than any Mars terrain studied by Opportunity, and could provide a new glimpse into the planet's history and water story, Arvidson said.


Source: www.foxnews.com...
23 pictrues link: www.space.com...

Working on the pictures.. Having computer issues.

I can't wait to see developes. Another chapter for sure.

Just looking over them quickly I have to say... more of the same.

No Aliens/Ufos yet.. just started looking.




edit on 8/11/2011 by anon72 because: (no reason given)




posted on Aug, 11 2011 @ 03:15 PM
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So I just read and looked through the pics. Image 17 "Chocolate Hill" rock looks like a piece of petrified lumber like a 4x4 or larger.



posted on Aug, 11 2011 @ 03:40 PM
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Thanks for the heads up. This is one big crater at 14 miles or 22 km in diameter!



The "hills" in the distance are actually ridges of the same Endeavour crater.

The Opportunity rover will probably spend it's last days (months I hope) exploring this crater.

PA, I got your petrified lumber beat with this "head on mars" pic:



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posted on Aug, 11 2011 @ 03:50 PM
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New Mars shots to study, Yesss!
We spend outrageous amounts of money on these missions though, so you'd think by now we could have a color camera up there and not have to deal with false-color images (the processing of which lowers the resolution). What's up NASA, I mean...whats up?!





If this blue stuff isn't bio-life, I'll be very surprised. Fascinating images and
to the op!
edit on 11-8-2011 by lowundertheradar because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 11 2011 @ 04:06 PM
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Originally posted by ParanoidAmerican
So I just read and looked through the pics. Image 17 "Chocolate Hill" rock looks like a piece of petrified lumber like a 4x4 or larger.


Look at the rock behind it....doesn't that look like a perfectly flat surface on it?
2nd



posted on Aug, 11 2011 @ 04:08 PM
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reply to post by lowundertheradar
 


The next rover, the Mars Science Laboratory or Curiosity will have much better cameras that can supposedly take true colour images:


Previous color cameras on Mars have taken a sequence of exposures through different color filters to be combined on Earth into color views. The Mastcams record color the same way consumer digital cameras do: They have a grid of tiny red, green and blue squares (a "Bayer pattern" filter) fitted over the electronic light detector (the charge-coupled device, or CCD).


The two mastcams, which can also take 3D pictures, are rated at two-megapixels.

Link

MSL will land on Mars on August 2012. Ironically, since it powered by a small radioisotope power system, it may not last as long as the solar powered Opportunity and Spirit rovers.



posted on Aug, 11 2011 @ 04:14 PM
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The best lies in this world are your own eyes.
Just saying..

hehe..




posted on Aug, 12 2011 @ 03:38 AM
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Originally posted by lowundertheradar
New Mars shots to study, Yesss!
We spend outrageous amounts of money on these missions though, so you'd think by now we could have a color camera up there and not have to deal with false-color images (the processing of which lowers the resolution). What's up NASA, I mean...whats up?!


I don't understand your question. If you don't want to see the false color image on the right, don't look at it. The original image is on the left, they don't say that one is false color.


If this blue stuff isn't bio-life, I'll be very surprised. Fascinating images and
to the op!
I'd be very surprised if it is bio-life. The next photo in the sequence, #18, shows a close-up of the "blueberries". The blueberries look like they could be spherules of molten rock that formed during the impact, which is sort of like one of NASA's two theories on the coating:

geology.com...

Impactor Debris or Common Joint Filling?

The composition Opportunity found for the dark coating material fits at least two hypotheses being evaluated, and possibly others. One is that the material resulted from partial melting of blueberry-containing sandstone from the energy of the impact. Another is that it formed from filling of fractures in this type of rock before the impact occurred.

"It's possible that when you melt this rock, the sandstone melts before the blueberries do, leaving intact blueberries as part of a melt layer," Squyres said. "As an alternative, we know that this type of rock has fractures and that the sandstone can dissolve. Long ago, water flowing through fractures could have dissolved the sandstone and liberated blueberries that fell down into the fracture and packed together. In this hypothesis, the impact that excavated the crater did not play a role in forming this material, but split rocks along fractures so the material is exposed on the exterior like a coating."


I don't know why NASA seems so uncertain about it, spherules are very common with impacts, we see them on Earth all the time:
Impact and Geology: spherules rule


. Big impacts can form a thin layer of bits of glass that cover most of the earth’s surface. The glass that goes a long way is most likely to have flown in the air as small droplets, known as spherules.
So now we see a dense layer of spherules on the surface of rocks right next to a big relatively recent impact. I don't know why this should be a mystery. They even explain the reason they see it on that particular crater, is that it's relatively recent so the martian sandstorms haven't eroded the coating away yet like they have with other craters. I'm not even a professional geologist but I think that article on spherules explains how they form and may give a better explanation than either of NASA's theories.

Specifically, the vaporized rock shoots way up into the atmosphere and condenses into spherules. Those spherules that are still partially molten or a little soft when they hit the rock form a spherule coating. One of NASA's theories is close to that, but either it's a little off of what probably happened, or Squyres isn't explaining himself very well. And his other theory doesn't make much sense to me.

Nice photos!

edit on 12-8-2011 by Arbitrageur because: clarification



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