Spirit's 'Paige' Panorama of the Interior of 'Home Plate' (False Color)
On Feb. 19, 2006, the 758th Martian day of exploration of the red planet
by NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit, the rover acquired this panoramic
view of the interior of "Home Plate," a circular topographic feature amid
the "Columbia Hills." This view, called the "Paige" panorama, is from the
top of Home Plate. It shows layered rocks exposed at the edge as well as
dark rocks exhibiting both smooth and sponge-like "scoriaceous" textures.
To the east from this vantage point, "McCool Hill" looms on the horizon.
At the base of McCool Hill is a reddish outcrop called "Oberth," which
Spirit may explore during the rapidly approaching Martian winter. "Von
Braun" and "Goddard" hills are partially visible beyond the opposite rim
of Home Plate.
The limited spatial coverage of this panorama is the result of steadily
decreasing power available to the rover for science activities as the
Martian winter arrives and the sun traces a lower path across the sky. The
rover team anticipates that the north-facing slopes of McCool Hill should
sufficiently tilt the rover's solar panels toward the sun to allow Spirit
to survive the winter.
The view covers about 230 degrees of terrain around the rover. Spirit's
panoramic camera (Pancam) took 72 separate images of this scene with four
different Pancam filters. This is a false-color rendering using the
Pancam's 75-nanometer, 535-nanometer, and 432-nanometer filters, enhanced
to show many subtle color differences in rocks, soils, and hills in the
scene. Image-to-image seams have been eliminated from the sky portion of
the mosaic to better simulate the vista a person standing on Mars would
Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/USGS/Cornell
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