Roving the Red Planet
Roving the Red Planet

This budget continues to build on our nation's record of breathtaking scientific discoveries and achievements in space, with science missions that will reach farther into our solar system, reveal unknown aspects of our universe and provide critical knowledge about our home planet.

On the heels of Curiosity, the most daring mission to Mars in history, the Fiscal Year 2014 budget includes funding for another mission to the Red Planet, continues operations of our rovers and orbiters already there, and makes possible the MAVEN mission's launch this November to study the Martian upper atmosphere and InSight to launch later.

This rectangular version of a self-portrait of NASA's Mars rover Curiosity combines dozens of exposures taken by the rover's Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) during the 177th Martian day, or sol, of Curiosity's work on Mars (Feb. 3, 2013).

The rover is positioned at a patch of flat outcrop called "John Klein," which was selected as the site for the first rock-drilling activities by Curiosity. The self-portrait was acquired to document the drilling site.

The rover's robotic arm is not visible in the mosaic. MAHLI, which took the component images for this mosaic, is mounted on a turret at the end of the arm. Wrist motions and turret rotations on the arm allowed MAHLI to acquire the mosaic's component images. The arm was positioned out of the shot in the images or portions of images used in the mosaic.

Malin Space Science Systems, San Diego, developed, built and operates MAHLI. NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., manages the Mars Science Laboratory Project and the mission's Curiosity rover for NASA's Science Mission Directorate in Washington. The rover was designed and assembled at JPL, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena.

Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS

Page Last Updated: July 28th, 2013
Page Editor: NASA Administrator