This view from the Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) on the arm of NASA's Curiosity Mars rover shows a combination of dark and light material within a mineral vein at a site called "Garden City" on lower Mount Sharp.
The image was taken on April 4, 2015, during the 946th Martian day, or sol, of Curiosity's work on Mars. The area shown is roughly 1 inch (2.5 centimeters) wide.
Differences in textures of light-toned veins in the Garden City complex of crisscrossing mineral veins are clues that these veins may result from distinct fluid events. This example shows where a later addition of light-toned material into a vein ripped up prior dark material, suggesting both high fluid pressure and potentially explosive release of high pressures. Different examples are at PIA19925 and PIA19926.
Mineral veins often form where fluids move through fractured rocks, depositing minerals in the fractures and affecting chemistry of the surrounding rock. At Garden City, the veins have been more resistant to erosion than the surrounding host rock. The fluid movement through fractures at Garden City occurred later than wet environmental conditions in which the host rock formed, before it hardened and cracked.
Malin Space Science Systems, San Diego, built and operates MAHLI. NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the Mars Science Laboratory Project for the NASA Science Mission Directorate, Washington. JPL designed and built the project's Curiosity rover.
More information about Curiosity is online at http://www.nasa.gov/msl and http://mars.jpl.nasa.gov/msl/.