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NASA Mars Rover Curiosity discovers peculiar pebbles



These tiny pebbles on Mars look like they could have come from Earth.


NASA / JPL-Caltech / MSSS

NASA's Curiosity Rover has recently been on Mars pebbles. The rover rolls to a potential drilling site, but does some sightseeing along the way. The views include a fascinating collection of rounded pebbles.

While some rocks look like they could have been swallowed from a creek bed, some of the smaller and grayer pebbles look like gloriously round peas.

Software engineer Kevin M. Gill, who pervades NASA data and processes space images ( like this beautiful Jupiter shot ), offered an improved version of the pebble field that really adds to it to highlight the gray stones of the others.

The raw images of Curiosity, March 23 and 24, are full of different views of these rocks. The Rover team examines the pebbles to learn more about their chemical composition.

Some of the pebbles are reminiscent of rocks previously seen on the Red Planet and reminiscent of blueberries or miniature cannonballs.

Some "blueberries" discovered by Opportunity Rover in 2004 are as big as BBs and rich in hematite. NASA suggested that these beads could be "concretions grown in water-soaked reservoirs."

Curiosity seems to work well after some technical difficulties occurred in in February and early March. NASA moved the rover to another computer "brain" to get it back up and running. These beautiful new pictures of Mars' wonderful pebbles are a good sign that the mission is running smoothly again.


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