A new animated video shows what it would be like to soar over Mount Sharp, which NASA’s Curiosity rover has been climbing since 2014. Each region displayed represents a different period in the history of Mount Sharp, which rises about 3 miles (5 kilometers) from the base of Gale Crater. Curiosity’s scientists want to visit these places to learn more about the history of water on the mountain, which slowly dried up as the climate changed.
After snagging a new rock sample on Aug. 9, NASA’s Curiosity rover surveyed its surroundings on Mars, producing a 360-degree panorama of its current location on Vera Rubin Ridge under umber skies, darkened by a fading global dust storm. Curiosity is poised to drive to its scientific end zone: areas enriched in clay and sulfate minerals higher up Mount Sharp. That ascent is planned for early October.