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Tech & Science NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars

00:50  07 june  2019
00:50  07 june  2019 Source:   cnet.com

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It's just another twilight on Mars. You're a rover, kicking back after a long day of science, gazing up at the clouds. Sometimes it's the simple moments that are the most stunning.

NASA's Curiosity rover has been in skygazing mode lately, sending back ethereal visions of noctilucent (night shining) clouds. Curiosity team member Claire Newman highlighted the rover's late-May sky view in a mission update on Wednesday.

The noctilucent clouds are "so high that they're still illuminated by the sun, even when it's night at the surface and any lower cloud layers are already in shadow," Newman wrote. Mars is heading into a cloudy season, making this a prime time for watching the atmosphere.

Moon landings astronaut says Mars should be next space destination

Moon landings astronaut says Mars should be next space destination Revered astronaut Michael Collins, who was on board the Apollo 11 mission to the moon in 1969, has marked the 50th anniversary of the iconic moon landing by calling for space agencies to forget about the moon and focus further afield. In an exclusive interview with 60 Minutes reporter Sarah Abo, Collins says the future of space exploration has to be focused on getting to Mars, instead of replicating past missions to the moon. “Mars has always been my destination, my favourite one,” he told Abo.

NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars © NASA/JPL-Caltech Image processors Justin Cowart and Seán Doran gifted us a video version of the recent clouds that makes it feel like you're standing on Mars.

The night-shining clouds are beautiful, but they can also tell scientists a lot about what's happening up above the rover, including how much water vapor there is in atmosphere.

Curiosity isn't the only NASA machine that enjoys a bit of cloud-watching. The InSight lander shared some soothing cloud images earlier in the year.

Curiosity is currently checking out a clay-rich area in the Gale Crater and recently sent back a fresh selfie. So what's next? More science and more beautiful days on Mars.

Pictures: The most stunning space photos ever

NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
NASA rover sees bewitching night-shining clouds on Mars
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