Perseverance captured its first Martian sunset

The rover captured the moment after collecting its third rock sample. The photo of the glow in the mountains was posted on Nasa's twitter profile.

Nasa's Perseverance rover captured its first Mars sunset. In one image, a faint glow can be seen peeking out behind the dark outline of mountains. The shot was taken when the vehicle stopped while working to collect its third rock sample and "decided to turn its eyes to the sky," they let the U.S. space agency know. The photo was posted on the Mars Rover mission's Twitter profile and is one of a kind.

The photo of the first Martian sunset

"Take a moment to marvel at this: I captured my first view of a Martian sunset with my Mastcam-Z," reads the Twitter profile of Nasa's Perseverance Mars Rover. "It's easy to go on and on and on all the time, but it's also important to look up," the photo's caption reads further. Between missions searching for and recovering rock fragments on Mars, it seems Perseverance also wants to recognize the importance of taking a moment to pause and admire the spectacle of the Sun falling asleep even on the Red Planet. The photograph, unlike other Martian sunsets, has less vivid colors than the typical blue/blue coloration. The explanation could be related to the presence of less dust in the atmosphere, which changes the way light scatters (due to a phenomenon called Rayleigh Scattering).

The Perseverance Mission

The Perseverance rover, earlier this week, collected its third rock sample. "Another little piece of Mars to take with me," it tweeted. "My latest sample is from a rock rich in the greenish mineral olivine, and my science team has several ideas on how it got there. Hypotheses take flight! Science rules," the post reads. Retrieved Nov. 15, scientists are now trying to characterize the mineral, which may be magmatic in origin. Analyses are currently being conducted on the rock with instruments such as SuperCam, PIXL and WATSON. Perseverance will store it until the rock fragment is deposited in a recognizable location where another rover will pick it up for the Sample Return mission. The samples so far collected by Perseverance will be brought back to Earth around 2030.

In the meantime, it has been identified where there may have been life on Mars and that there was a lake on the Red Planet, about 3.7 billion years ago.

Stefania Bernardini