Thumbnail of Mars
This "thumbnail" image illustrates the size of the first image expected from NASA's Curiosity rover. It was taken by a rover engineering model during a test session in the Mars Yard at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. The rover model snapped the picture through the "fisheye" lens of one of its Hazard-Avoidance cameras. The thumbnail, which is 64 pixels by 64 pixels, is a smaller version of a larger image acquired by the hazard camera (full-resolution images are 1,024 by 1,024 pixels).
When Curiosity lands at 10:31 p.m. Aug. 5 PDT (1:31 a.m. Aug. 6 EDT), it will most likely not send any images back until about two hours after landing, during a second pass of NASA's signal-relaying Odyssey orbiter. However, it's possible the rover will beam back just a thumbnail the same size as this one shortly after landing.
During the second Odyssey pass, larger hazard camera images up to one-half of full resolution are expected.
As planned, Curiosity's early engineering images are lower resolution. Larger color images are expected later in the week when the rover's mast, carrying high-resolution cameras, is deployed.
Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech