NASA’s Curiosity rover sends images of stunningly blue sunset from Mars, the Administration declared on Monday.
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration sent the Curiosity rover to investigate Mars’ surface approximately three years ago. The mission was supposed to last two years, but scientists decided to continue the research as the car-sized rover continues to send relevant soil analyses and pictures of the Red Planet.
The most recent images that the robot has sent reveal an unprecedented stunningly blue sunset from Mars. This is the first time that humanity witnesses the sunset from another planet.
The amazing phenomenon triggers many other scientific researches that experts at NASA may carry out in the future to make additional discoveries about the planet. So far, they have only compared the sunset on Mars with the sunsets we normally experience on Earth.
Unlike terrestrial sunsets, Martian twilights are totally different.
The first thing that might surprise people is that the Martian sundown is not yellow, red or orange as we normally expect it to be, but blue and sometimes grey. These hues are caused by the dust particles surrounding Mars’ atmosphere, also held responsible for the Red Planet’s famous dust storms.
Dust on Mars is slightly different than the fine powder on Earth. Dust particles on Mars are generally finer, so they are differently dispersed throughout Mars’ atmosphere.
Objects, such as the Curiosity rover, lying on Mars’ ground will perceive the rays of sun as blue-hued, due to the manner in which the light is filtered by the dust particles on the Red Planet.
Viewed from a distance, however, the sunset is just as yellow and bright as we know it from Earth’s surface. In fact, the farther we get from Mars’ surface, the better the sunlight is filtered and the yellow color reemerges.
Scientists at NASA have expansively promoted the images of the blue Martian sunset on all their websites and social network accounts. The reason they did so is because it was for the first time when humanity viewed the sunset from another planet.
NASA has even provided a quotation from one of T.S. Eliot’s poems for those romantic souls, who care less for the scientific explanation of the phenomenon and more for the emotional load it carries.
“Let us go then, you and I/When the evening is spread out against the sky,” was the quotation that accompanied Curiosity’s pictures of the blue Martian sunset published on the Administration’s official Twitter account.
Image Source: Mirror