NASA’s Insight lander has become the latest spacecraft to successfully land on the surface of the red planet.
And because it simply can, it has sent back a stunning new selfie from the Red Planet’s surface, showing us another example of Mars’ beauty.
The latest image from Mars offers the mission team, as well as the rest of us Earthlings, a stunning view at the lander’s solar panels and how the spacecraft looks as it settled in into its new office.
In addition to the selfie, the lander also snapped a stunning image of the 14-by-7-foot swath of Martian land where the lender will perform a plethora of different experiments.
Each of the images is a mosaic of several photographs stitched together.
The selfie was captured by the lander’s robotic arm and is a composite photograph of 11 different images.
The image of the Marian land where the lander will work on is a composition of 52 individual images.
The view of the Martian soil will offer mission scientists an unprecedented view of the area where the robot will work.
InSight’s Principal Investigator Bruce Banerdt of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory explained: “The near-absence of rocks, hills, and holes means it’ll be extremely safe for our instruments.”
“This might seem like a pretty plain piece of ground if it weren’t on Mars, but we’re glad to see that,” he added.
Almost immediately after landing, the rover sent back its first observation of the red planet.
Perhaps the best thing so far recorded by InSight is the sound of Martian wind. According to NASA, this is the first time we’ve heard the sound of Marian wind.
Mission scientists are now getting ready to prepare the lander for upcoming operations which will tell us unprecedented details on what Mars is like beneath the surface.
But before it reveals the red planet’s surface, scientists have warned that they will take it slow with InSight and that the lander will be taking baby steps over the next few months.
“By carefully swinging my arm out in front of me, I’m starting to get a better look at the ground in front of me where I’ll be doing my work,” the Nasa InSight account tweeted.
“Meanwhile, kind of hypnotized by the play of light and shadow on my arm.”