Curiosity continues to investigate sand dune formations as it drives up the northwestern side of Mount Sharp (#AeolisMons). On one of these stops #Curiosity turned its camera back on itself to check its aluminum wheels. Approximately 16km/10mi have been driven on the rovers six wheels and this left-middle wheel shows the greatest amount of wear. It is estimated Curiosity has many more km/mi of drive potential and this wear is not too worrisome. This wheel check image was taken by the Mars Hand Lens Imager (#MAHLI) on Sol 1682 (2017-04-30 09:29:01 UTC). Instagram contrast enhanced photo.
Curiosity performed a number of science experiments upon the sand of an area named "Ogunquit Beach". This spherical and low to the ground image was taken by Curiosity's Right 'B' Front #HazCam on Sol 1659 (2017-04-06 16:00:15 UTC). #Curiosity then drove ~35m/114ft to the southwest to continue measuring the composition of bedrock as it continues its ascent of Mount Sharp (#AeolisMons). Instagram contrast enhanced photo.
Curiosity looks beyond a sea of sand in this B/W image as it continues to climb Mount Sharp (#AeolisMons). While driving through an area known as "Old Soaker", #Curiosity identified 3 billion year old eroded mud cracks (aka 'desiccation cracks') giving weight to the theory Mars was once a wetter planet. This image was taken by the Right-side 'B' #NavCam on Sol 1584 (2017-01-19 17:08:58 UTC). Instagram contrast enhanced photo.
This golf ball sized piece of iron-nickel meteorite was named "Egg Rock". These types of meteorites are quite common on Earth. If you look closely, you may be able to see the shiny grid patterns that Curiosity's #ChemCam instrument zapped into it with its laser for element confirmation. This photo was taken with Curiosity's #MastCam on Sol 1535 (2016-11-30) and was color balanced to look as it would in daytime lighting on Earth. Instagram contrast enhanced photo.
For the past month Curiosity has been in a region called "Murray Buttes" conducting experiments and a lot of driving. This region is characterized by its many sandstone geological features. It is believed the sandstone was deposited by winds after the lower layers of Mount Sharp (#AeolisMons) formed. Curiosity will now exit the scenic region and head higher up Mount Sharp. This image was taken by the Right-side 'B' #NavCam on Sol 1448 (2016-09-02 02:15:03 UTC). Instagram contrast enhanced photo.
Curiosity has begun its months-long trek up a mudstone rock outcrop at the base of Mount Sharp (#AeolisMons). As #Curiosity climbs higher, younger geological evidence is available for analysis to learn more about how ancient environmental conditions evolved from available freshwater to conditions less favorable toward life. This photo was taken by the Right-side #MastCam on Sol 1419 (2016-08-03 06:13:23 UTC). Instagram contrast enhanced photo, no filter.
With Mount Sharp (#AeolisMons) in the left-side background, Curiosity uses its Left-side #MastCam to survey the terrain on Sol 1384 (2016-06-28 06:13:19 UTC). Curiosity continues its drive up the lower portions of Mount Sharp investigating ancient environmental conditions associated with water. Instagram contrast enhanced photo.
Curiosity visited an area named "Fracture Town" which contains many pointed, layered rock formations like the one imaged here. In the upper left corner is evidence of five Curiosity brush tests that occurred upon the fragile formation. This image was taken by the Right-side #MastCam on Sol 1352 (2016-05-26 04:59:47 UTC).
This crop of Mount Sharp (#AeolisMons) is from a larger panorama acquired by Curiosity's #MastCam on 04-04-2016. This photo has been color balanced to reflect what the scene would look like if it were on Earth. Instagram contrast enhanced photo.
As part of a regular self-inspection process, #Curiosity lowered its robotic arm containing the Mars Hand Lens Imager #MAHLI and imaged its undercarriage, catching a glimpse of the surrounding hills in the photo. The image was taken on Sol 1287 (2016-03-20 14:36:53 UTC) Instagram contrast enhanced photo.
Curiosity turns its Mars Hand Lens Imager (#MAHLI) on itself and takes 57 images to create this selfie on Sol 1228 (2016-01-19). Curiosity is located at a dark-sand dune called 'Namib', located within the greater "Bagnold Dune Field". Images from the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (#MRO) indicate that the Bagnold dunes move up to 3ft/1m per Earth year. Instagram contrast enhanced photo.
Curiosity arrived at this active sand dune named "Gobabeb", which is part of a larger dune field known as "Bagnold". The dunes are being sampled to understand how Mars' reduced atmosphere and gravity (in comparison to Earth) affect the blowing and sorting of sand. This image was taken by the Right-side 'B' #NavCam on Sol 1221 (2016-01-12 19:40:47 UTC). Instagram contrast enhanced photo.