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| | Space on Feb 04, 2014

Where the Curiosity rover is now on Mars

The Curiosity rover is in a particularly interesting place now, creeping across a sand dune in a place called Dingo Gap on Mars. Breathtaking images!

Sol 533 on Mars.  Image via Curiosity/NASA / JPL-Caltech

View from the left NAVCAM of the Mars Curiosity rover on Sol 533 on Mars. That’s February 4, 2014 to us earthlings. Image via Curiosity/NASA / JPL-Caltech

NASA’s Curiosity rover has been making its way across the floor of the Gale Crater on Mars, heading for the base of Mount Sharp, the central peak in the crater. It’s in a particularly interesting place today (February 4, 2014), sitting atop a sand dune in a place called Dingo Gap on Mars. The images on this page are from Curiosity today, which, for this rover, is Sol 533 (a sol is a martian day; it’s 39 minutes and 35 seconds longer than a day on Earth).

Daniel Fischer (@cosmos4u) wrote on Twitter today:

Curiosity is standing atop the dune of Dingo Gap and has been looking around: go to midnightplanets.com/web/MSL/image/ and then click “Next” many times!

Do it! You’ll enjoy it. Thank you, Daniel!

NASA said on January 29, while reporting on the plan to send Curiosity over a small sand dune in Dingo Gap, that Curiosity has driven 865 feet (264.7 meters) since Jan. 1, for a total odometry of 3.04 miles (4.89 kilometers) since its August 2012 landing.

Explanation of Martian geology in and around Curiosity’s current location, from Emily Lakdawala of the Planetary Society.

Follow Curiosity’s path on Mars. It was only updated to Sol 532 last time I looked … one sol ago.

Alphabetical list of named rocks and areas on Mars, from Curiosity’s mission

Sol 533 on Mars.  Image via Curiosity/NASA / JPL-Caltech

Emily Lakdawalla (@elakdawalla on Twitter) wrote on February 4: “This pic gives you an idea of Curiosity’s current tilt, parked [atop a small sand] dune; I measure it at 16 degrees. No sweat.” Image via Curiosity/NASA / JPL-Caltech

Bottom line: The Curiosity rover is in a particularly interesting place now, creeping across a sand dune in a place called Dingo Gap on Mars. Breathtaking images!