Mars Orbiter Spies on Curiosity's Work Site
NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Arizona
Orbital HiRISE image of NASA's Mars Science Laboratory at "the Kimberley," a location where Curiosity will drill into Mars rock to search for signs of past habitability.
Curiosity may feel distant and isolated, but its orbital buddy is never far away.
The one-ton NASA Mars rover is currently preparing for drilling operations in a location dubbed "the Kimberley" (named after the western region of Australia). Planetary geologists hope that the relatively newly-exposed rock formation there will reveal pristine samples of organic material that may be used for further study to investigate the Red Planet's ancient habitable potential.
But as Curiosity works, NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter recently got an orbiter-eye-view on the rover with its High-Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera, revealing the robot's rectangular frame and wheel tracks weaving between the rocky obstacles on Aeolis Palus, the plain that Curiosity is currently exploring on its way to Aeolis Mons -- the 5 kilometer-high mountain inside Gale Crater nicknamed "Mount Sharp."