New Curiosity panoramas show full view of Mount Sharp

High-resolution view of Mount Sharp in Gale crater. Click for larger version. Credit: NASA / JPL / Emily Lakdawalla

There are some great new panoramic images from the Curiosity rover finally showing Mount Sharp in full profile. Other than some early low-resolution images, previous higher-resolution photos have shown only the lower portions and foothills of Mount Sharp, which is several kilometres away from Curiosity’s landing site and about 5.5 kilometres (3.4 miles) tall. Taken on sol 12, these ones are black and white, but colour ones will follow as well.

The individual images have been stitched together to form the complete panoramas; the first is an excellent three-frame Navcam panorama of Mount Sharp, put together by Emily Lakdawalla from The Planetary Society (above). We can now see the entire mountain (from this vantage point) in higher resolution than before. Click image for larger version.

The second panorama, from Damien Bouic in France, shows the first 360˚ view around the rover which includes all of Mount Sharp. His original blog post is here (in French). There are two versions posted there, the static image (same as below) and a VR version which you can zoom around in. Click image for larger version.

360˚ panoramic view of Mount Sharp in Gale crater. Click for larger version. Credit: NASA / JPL / Damien Bouic

The third panorama below is the official version from NASA. Larger sizes can be downloaded here.

360˚ panoramic view of Mount Sharp in Gale crater. Credit: NASA / JPL-Caltech

It should also be noted that the actual highest peak of Mount Sharp is out of view from this location, and won’t be seen until Curiosity can move much closer to and around the mountain. Thanks to Emily and Damien for use of their images!

Paul Scott Anderson is a freelance space writer with a life-long passion for space exploration and astronomy. He started his blog The Meridiani Journal in 2005, which is a chronicle of planetary exploration. He also publishes The Exoplanet Report e-paper. In 2011, he started writing about space on a freelance basis, and now also currently write for AmericaSpace and He has also written for Universe Today and SpaceFlight Insider, has been published in The Mars Quarterly and has done supplementary writing for the well-known iOS app Exoplanet for iPhone and iPad.