PIA16452: A Martian Rock Called 'Rocknest 3'
 Target Name:  Mars
 Is a satellite of:  Sol (our sun)
 Mission:  Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
 Spacecraft:  Curiosity
 Instrument:  Mastcam
 Product Size:  1851 x 1440 pixels (w x h)
 Produced By:  Malin Space Science Systems
 Full-Res TIFF:  PIA16452.tif (7.999 MB)
 Full-Res JPEG:  PIA16452.jpg (538.1 kB)

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This view of a Martian rock called "Rocknest 3" combines four images taken by the right-eye camera of the Mast Camera (Mastcam) instrument, which has a telephoto, 100-millimeter-focal-length lens. The component images were taken a few minutes after Martian noon on the 59th Martian day, or sol, of Curiosity's operations on Mars (evening of Oct. 5, 2012, PDT).

Rocknest 3 is a rock approximately 15 inches (40 centimeters) long and 4 inches (10 centimeters) tall, next to the "Rocknest" patch of windblown dust and sand where Curiosity scooped and analyzed soil samples. The Mastcam was about 13 feet (4 meters) from the rock when the component images were taken, providing an image scale of about 0.01 inch (0.3 millimeter) per pixel.

The image has been white-balanced to show what the rock would look like if it were on Earth. Figure 1 is a raw-color version, showing what the rock looks like on Mars to the camera. Figure 2 includes annotation indicating the portion of Rocknest 3 covered in Sol 57 imaging by Curiosity's Chemistry and Camera (ChemCam) instrument at PIA16451.

JPL, a division of the California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, manages the Mars Science Laboratory Project for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington. JPL designed and built the rover.

More information about Curiosity is online at http://www.nasa.gov/msl and http://mars.jpl.nasa.gov/msl/.

Image Credit:
NASA/JPL-Caltech/Malin Space Science Systems

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