This 360-degree image shows a complete, full-resolution panorama around NASA's Curiosity rover, taken by the Navigation cameras. The pointy rim of Gale Crater can be seen as a lighter strip along the top right of the image. The base of Mount Sharp can be seen along the top left.
The image is a cylindrical projection, which shows the horizon as flat.
A cylindrical projection is created by computing the azimuth and elevation of each pixel in the original image and remapping it onto a virtual cylinder. Pixels in the same row of this image are at the same elevation, and pixels in the same column of this image are at the same azimuth.
This mosaic is made of 26 images, 1,024 by 1,024 pixels, taken late at night on Aug. 7 PDT (early morning Aug. 8 EDT). Seams between the images have been minimized as much as possible.
Mars Science Laboratory is a project of NASA's Science Mission Directorate. The mission is managed by JPL. Curiosity was designed, developed and assembled at JPL, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena.
For more about NASA's Curiosity mission, visit: http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/msl, http://www.nasa.gov/mars, and http://marsprogram.jpl.nasa.gov/msl.