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Mars Victoria Crater

Image of Mars Victoria Crater
ON THE EDGE: This spectacular image taken from NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) spacecraft shows Victoria Crater, an impact crater near the equator of Mars where hematite mineral deposits suggest Mars had a wet past. Layered sedimentary rocks are exposed along the inner wall of the crater, and the floor of the crater is occupied by a striking field of sand dunes. With the “Follow the Water” mantra, NASA’s twin Mars Exploration Rovers, Spirit and Opportunity, have been operating on the surface of Mars in search of answers about the history of water on the Red Planet since 2004 (unfortunately, Spirit has been quiet since 2010). Five days before this image was taken in September, 2006, the ‘Opportunity’ rover arrived at the rim of Victoria Crater, after a drive of more than 9km! It explored within the crater, staying at the site for about a year. The rover can actually be seen in this image as a small dot at the ‘ten o'clock’ position along the crater rim. Image Credit: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona/Science Photo Library
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