With all the buzz surrounding NASA’s Opportunity rover reaching Victoria crater, the other rover Spirit, started feeling a bit left out. So to celebrate the 1,000th Martian day of rover activity, NASA decided to release the most detailed 360 degree panorama yet produced by the rovers on Mars. Spirit’s McMurdo Panorama (22348 x 5771) was produced using 1,449 Pancam images of every wavelength filter available, many of which were kept uncompressed to preserve as much detail as possible.
Of course Spirit was able to accomplish this long term task because for the last six months it’s been waiting out the Martian winter on the side of a hill tilted toward the sun to get just enough power to subsist. It’s also notable that one wheel is stuck – as can be seen from the small trench in the tracks in the sand.
And by the way, the missing pieces of this panorama will be filled in and released soon – making for an even larger image.