The American space agency NASA has put online the first high-resolution color photograph that Perseverance took of the planet Mars’s surface. In the meantime, the agency has also shared some five thousand raw images that were taken during the rover’s landing last Thursday.
The color photograph itself was taken just after landing in the Jezero crater by cameras attached to Perseverance’s underside. A microphone also recorded the first-ever direct sounds from the surface of Mars.
It shows the sound of a light gust of wind. Later, NASA hopes to record other sounds, such as the grinding of the rover’s wheels across the surface of Mars and the drone of the robotic arm as it takes samples.
Last weekend, NASA staff went through a wealth of unseen images that the rover has already sent to Earth. According to employee Thomas Zurbuchen, this is ‘the closest you can get to landing on the red planet without having to put on a spacesuit yourself.’
The photos show sand dunes, rocks, and the 60-meter-high cliffs of the bed where Perseverance landed in the distance. It is to those cliffs that the rover will now move.
All images were color corrected. Originally they looked like the pictures below.
NASA also shared a panoramic photo taken on 20 February. It was constructed by gluing six pictures together to form a whole. This provides a view of the rover’s entire environment.