Opportunity's Heat Shield Scene
This image from NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity reveals the scene of the rover's heat shield impact. In this view, Opportunity is approximately 130 meters (427 feet) away from the device that protected it while hurtling through the martian atmosphere.
The rover spent 36 sols investigating how the severe heating during entry through the atmosphere affected the heat shield. The most obvious is the fact that the heat shield inverted upon impact.
This is the panoramic camera team's best current attempt at generating a true-color view of what this scene would look like if viewed by a human on Mars. It was generated from a mathematical combination of six calibrated, left-eye panoramic camera images acquired around 1:50 p.m. local solar time on Opportunity's sol 322 (Dec. 19, 2004) using filters ranging in wavelengths from 430 to 750 nanometers.
Image Credit: NASA/JPL/Cornell
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