A set of photos showing NASA Curiosity rover perfectly captures how much it has changed after spending over seven years on Mars. The images clearly show how much the rover has been affected by the harsh conditions on the Red Planet.
Curiosity is the latest and current rover being used by NASA to explore Mars. It was made by NASA along with its partners Boeing and Lockheed Martin.
Curiosity's Mission Overview
The rover was officially launched by NASA on Nov. 26, 2011. After traveling for almost a year in space, Curiosity reached Mars on Aug. 6, 2012. The main objective of the rover is to assess the environmental conditions of Mars. Specifically, Curiosity is helping scientists determine if the Red Planet once had the ideal conditions that could have supported alien life.
Originally, Curiosity was only supposed to stay on Mars for two years. However, shortly after landing on the planet, NASA decided to extend its mission indefinitely. Since arriving on Mars, the rover has been roaming through its rough terrain for more than seven years.
Effect Of Mars On Curiosity
Recently, photos of the Curiosity were uploaded on the image-sharing website Imgur. They feature a side-by-side comparison of the rover's latest selfie and the photo it took when it first arrived in 2012. Its most recent selfie was taken on Oct. 11, 2019, after the rover explored a drill site on Mars.
The images posted on Imgur clearly show how much the rover has changed on Mars. Although its main structure is still the same, the rover has clearly lost its shine during the course of its mission. Most of its parts are covered by Mars' red dust. Of course, given Mars' harsh conditions, seeing how much Curiosity has changed over the years isn't that surprising. After all, the Red Planet is known for its severe dust storms. According to NASA, some of these dust storms can so big that they can be spotted from Earth.