Opportunity Enters Perseverance Valley

After carrying out a detailed “walkabout” study of the terrain at the entrance to Perseverance Valley during the past few weeks, it seems that Opportunity has finally trundled over the edge and started to drive down into the valley. We know this because the rear cameras show this view…

1R552627388EFFCZXHP1311L0M1b

…and her forward cameras show this view… *downhill*… 🙂

1F552627264EFFCZXHP1211L0M1b

And if you look closely at that last image you’ll see what appears to be a small crater just up ahead. Looking for that crater on an image of PV (as I’m going to call it from now, I think, to save typing time) allows us to work out really well just where Oppy has got to. And she’s here…

crater ingress

Here’s a closer and rather more detailed view of that crater… this is a processed, stitched together  mosaic of two separate images sent back by Oppy…

mosaic crater b

Haven’t found any reference to a name yet, but I’m sure it will be christened in due course. And we’ll get a closer look at the crater after the next drive, I imagine.

Today was a very appropriate day for Opportunity to roll into Perseverance Valley, because it’s a big anniversary day for our brave girl: on this very day in 2003, Opportunity was launched towards Mars…

launch Boeing

Photo credit: Boeing

Obviously you can’t see it on that image, but at the very top of that Delta rocket, coccooned inside her protective shell and folded up like an origami model,  was Opportunity. Here’s a NASA/JPL photo of how she looked as she was being prepared for being mounted on the rocket…

Opportunity1 NASAJPL

Six months later Opportunity landed on Mars and began her great adventure. That adventure continues today, as Opportunity starts to descend the steep slope at the top of Perseverance Valley.  Up ahead of her – who knows? But every time Opportunity has gone somewhere new – and there have been a LOT of “somewhere news” since she landed – she has found something amazing. I’m certain Perseverance valley will be no different.

Bring It On!

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One Response to Opportunity Enters Perseverance Valley

  1. requalls2015 says:

    Thank you very much!

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