This is one of the first images taken by NASA’s Curiosity rover, which landed on Mars early this morning. It was taken through a “fisheye” wide-angle lens on the left “eye” of a stereo pair of Hazard-Avoidance cameras on the left-rear side of the rover. The image is one-half of full resolution. The clear dust cover that protected the camera during landing has been sprung open. Part of the spring that released the dust cover can be seen at the bottom right, near the rover’s wheel.
On the top left, part of the rover’s power supply is visible.
As planned, the rover’s early engineering images are lower resolution. Larger color images from other cameras are expected later in the week when the rover’s mast, carrying high-resolution cameras, is deployed.
—Description from NASA. Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech
The Mars rover Curiosity is set to land in a few hours on the ellipse marked on this image of Gale Crater. If the landing goes well, Curiosity will drive in subsequent months to science destinations on Mount Sharp, outside of the landing ellipse.