Shining on the Martian surface near the Viking 2 spacecraft is the aluminum shroud, or cover, which protected the collector head of the surface sampler instrument during Viking's year-long journey from Earth. On September 5, two days after Viking 2 landed, the surface sampler was rotated from its parked position atop the spacecraft and pointed downward about 40 degrees. The shroud was then ejected by a set of eight springs positioned around its base. It struck the porous rock at the bottom of the picture, bounced about 20 inches, hit the surface again and bounced another 20 inches. The scar left by the second bounce is faintly visible halfway between the shroud and the rock it struck. The shroud is 12 inches long and 4 1/2 inches in diameter. The large rock just beyond it is about 2 feet long and about a foot thick. At lower right is the support structure of one of the spacecraft s three landing legs.