Readers!
 

Please consider donating to Behind the Black, by giving either a one-time contribution or a regular subscription, as outlined in the tip jar below. Your support will allow me to continue covering science and culture as I have for the past twenty years, independent and free from any outside influence.


 

Regular readers can support Behind The Black with a contribution via paypal:
 


 

Or with a subscription with regular donations from your Paypal or credit card account:


 

If Paypal doesn't work for you, you can support Behind The Black directly by sending your donation by check, payable to Robert Zimmerman, to
 

Behind The Black
c/o Robert Zimmerman
P.O.Box 1262
Cortaro, AZ 85652


Curiosity’s mesa-top view of Gale Crater

The view of Gale Crater from on top of Mont Mercou
Click for full image.

Cool image time! The photo above, reduced slightly to post here, was taken on April 14, 2021 by one of the navigation cameras on Curiosity. The rover was then and is still sitting on top of the twenty foot high outcrop dubbed Mont Mercou.

Last week I had posted a panorama made from images at this viewpoint looking south towards Mount Sharp. Today’s image is from the same place, but now looks north across the floor of Gale Crater at the areas that Curiosity had previously traveled. I think the smallest mesas on the left of this image are the Murray Buttes which Curiosity was traveling through back in 2016, but am not certain.

The mountains in the far distance are the rim of the crater, about 30 miles away.

Pioneer cover

From the press release: From the moment he is handed a possibility of making the first alien contact, Saunders Maxwell decides he will do it, even if doing so takes him through hell and back.

 
Unfortunately, that is exactly where that journey takes him.

The vision that Zimmerman paints of vibrant human colonies on the Moon, Mars, the asteroids, and beyond, indomitably fighting the harsh lifeless environment of space to build new societies, captures perfectly the emerging space race we see today.

He also captures in Pioneer the heart of the human spirit, willing to push forward no matter the odds, no matter the cost. It is that spirit that will make the exploration of the heavens possible, forever, into the never-ending future.

Available everywhere for $3.99 (before discount) at amazon, Barnes & Noble, all ebook vendors, or direct from the ebook publisher, ebookit. And if you buy it from ebookit you don't support the big tech companies and I get a bigger cut much sooner.

4 comments

  • Michael Mangold

    Mars needs Joshua trees.

  • Alex Andrite

    Hey M.M.,
    Mars has what it needs.
    It is a planet.

    Although Josuha trees and a nice sea coast line with in land Redwoods and gentle beaches might entice me.
    As long as the tides had a nice point break.
    I will need a recent tide book in order to consider further..

    Trees On !!

  • pawn

    What is it that makes these photographs so fascinating to me?
    There is nothing here but rocks and dust and sunlight and the work of countless millennia.
    The lunar photos are alien enough that I can “other” them.
    But there’s something about these Martian landscapes that it stirs the imagination.

  • Edward

    pawn asked: “What is it that makes these photographs so fascinating to me?

    Could it be that these pictures look much like an Earthly desert, whereas pictures from the Moon do not show a lit up sky?

Readers: the rules for commenting!

 

No registration is required. I welcome all opinions, even those that strongly criticize my commentary.

 

However, name-calling and obscenities will not be tolerated. First time offenders who are new to the site will be warned. Second time offenders or first time offenders who have been here awhile will be suspended for a week. After that, I will ban you. Period.

 

Note also that first time commenters as well as any comment with more than one link will be placed in moderation for my approval. Be patient, I will get to it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *