Image: Close-up of a meteorite - 'Oilean Ruaidh'

Oct 06, 2010
Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Cornell University

This is an image of the meteorite that NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity found and examined in September 2010.

Opportunity's cameras first revealed the in images taken on Sol 2363 (Sept. 16, 2010), the 2,363rd Martian day of the rover's mission on Mars. This view was taken with the on Sol 2371 (Sept. 24, 2010).

The science team used two tools on Opportunity's arm -- the microscopic imager and the alpha particle X-ray spectrometer -- to inspect the rock's texture and composition. Information from the spectrometer confirmed that the rock is a nickel-iron meteorite. The team informally named the rock "Oileán Ruaidh" (pronounced ay-lan ruah), which is the Gaelic name for an island off the coast of northwestern Ireland.

Opportunity departed Oileán Ruaidh and resumed its journey toward the mission's long-term destination, Endeavour Crater, on 2374 (Sept. 28, 2010) with a drive of about 100 meters (328 feet).

This view, presented in approximately true color, combines component images taken through three Pancam filters admitting wavelengths of 601 nanometers, 535 nanometers and 482 nanometers.

Explore further: Start of dwarf planet mission delayed after small mix-up

Related Stories

Opportunity finds possible meteorite

Sep 22, 2010

(PhysOrg.com) -- Images that NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity took at the end of an 81-meter (266-foot) drive on Sept. 16 reveal a dark rock about 31 meters (102 feet) away. The rover's science team ...

Rover Confirms Meteorite on Mars

Aug 06, 2009

(PhysOrg.com) -- Composition measurements by NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity confirm that this rock on the Martian surface is an iron-nickel meteorite.

Opportunity's Second Martian Birthday at Cape Verde

Oct 30, 2007

A promontory nicknamed "Cape Verde" can be seen jutting out from the walls of Victoria Crater in this approximate true-color picture taken by the panoramic camera on NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity.

Opportunity Presses On Toward Victoria

May 18, 2006

NASA's Opportunity rover has driven about 200 more meters (656 feet) to put itself within about 1,100 meters (two-thirds of a mile) of Victoria Crater, its next destination on the Meridiani Planum. As of Martian ...

On the Rim of 'Victoria Crater'

Sep 27, 2006

NASA's Mars rover Opportunity reached the rim of "Victoria Crater" in Mars' Meridiani Planum region with a 26-meter (85-foot) drive during the rover's 951st Martian day, or sol (Sept. 26, 2006). After the drive, ...

Recommended for you

Can sound help us detect 'earthquakes' on Venus?

Apr 23, 2015

Detecting an "earthquake" on Venus would seem to be an impossible task. The planet's surface is a hostile zone of crushing pressure and scorching temperatures—about 874 degrees F, hot enough to melt lead—that ...

Titan's atmosphere useful in study of hazy exoplanets

Apr 23, 2015

With more than a thousand confirmed planets outside of our solar system, astronomers are attempting to identify the atmospheres of these distant bodies to determine if they could possibly host life.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.