Two Perspectives of Séítah Rocks
The image on the left is an enhanced-color image taken by the Mastcam-Z imager aboard NASA's Perseverance rover of a rocky outcrop in the "Séítah" geologic unit of Jezero Crater. In the background, a portion of Jezero's ancient river delta can be made out. The image on the right is a mineral map created using Mastcam-Z's multispectral-imaging capability. Olivine is shown in red. Calcium-poor pyroxene is in green. Calcium-rich pyroxene in blue. Séítah rocks contain abundant olivine, and the regolith, or broken rock and soil, is diverse.
The data for these images was taken on Oct. 19, 2021 (the 237th sol, or Martian day, of Perseverance's mission to Mars).
The Mastcam-Z investigation is led and operated by Arizona State University in Tempe, working in collaboration with Malin Space Science Systems in San Diego, California, on the design, fabrication, testing, and operation of the cameras, and in collaboration with the Neils Bohr Institute of the University of Copenhagen on the design, fabrication, and testing of the calibration targets.
A key objective for Perseverance's mission on Mars is astrobiology, including the search for signs of ancient microbial life. The rover will characterize the planet's geology and past climate, pave the way for human exploration of the Red Planet, and be the first mission to collect and cache Martian rock and regolith (broken rock and dust).
Subsequent NASA missions, in cooperation with ESA (European Space Agency), would send spacecraft to Mars to collect these sealed samples from the surface and return them to Earth for in-depth analysis.
The Mars 2020 Perseverance mission is part of NASA's Moon to Mars exploration approach, which includes Artemis missions to the Moon that will help prepare for human exploration of the Red Planet.
JPL, which is managed for NASA by Caltech in Pasadena, California, built and manages operations of the Perseverance rover.
For more about Perseverance: