Destination: Gusev

Scaled Image

Image Credit: NASA/JPL/ASU

About this image

On 6-12-03 a Delta II rocket successfully lifted off from Cape Canaveral, Florida carrying the Mars Exploration Rover named Spirit. Its destination is a crater called Gusev in the southern hemisphere of Mars. This crater may have been the site of an ancient lake whose sediments could be sampled by Spirit. The THEMIS image covers a portion of the center of the elliptical region in which the rover is expected to land nearly seven months after liftoff. The scene contains wispy dark streaks that probably arise from the removal by wind of a layer of bright dust. Just to the south of the dark streaks is a boundary that may represent the edge of a layer of material that has flowed in from the south. With luck, Spirit will have access to a variety of interesting rock types and terrains that will settle the question of whether Gusev crater hosted a lake. UPDATE: Spirit successfully landed and has spent over a year investigating the floor of Gusev crater and the Columbia hills.

Please see the THEMIS Data Citation Note for details on crediting THEMIS images. 


Image ID: 
V00881003 (View data in Mars Image Explorer)
2002-02-24 18:43
Wed, 2003-06-11
1024 pixels (17 km)
3648 pixels (63 km)
0.017395 km/pixel
0.017522 km/pixel


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