Pyramid shaped rock found on Mars by NASA rover Curiosity

NASA, Pyramid, Mars, Curiosity
Meet “Jake Matijevic”. A pyramid-shaped rockfound on the planet Mars by NASA’s rover. NASA’s Mars rover Curiosity found an unusual pyramid-shaped rock en route to an area known as Glenelg, where researchers expect to find a combination of three different types of geological terrain.

The rock is pictured about 2.5m in front of the rover and is about 25cm tall and 40cm wide. It will be tested by the robot, which is has been on the move for the past six days travelling between 22m to 37m daily.

The pyramid-shaped rock, expected to be a lump of Martian basalt, has been named “Jake Matijevic” after the surface operations systems chief engineer for Mars Science Laboratory and the project’s Curiosity rover tragically died just after the vehicle touched down on August 6. The 64-year-old was a leading engineer for all of the previous NASA Mars rovers – Sojourner, Spirit and Opportunity.

NASA’s Mars rover Curiosity found an unusual pyramid-shaped rock en route to an area known as Glenelg, where researchers expect to find a combination of three different types of geological terrain.

The rock is pictured about 2.5m in front of the rover and is about 25cm tall and 40cm wide. It will be tested by the robot, which is has been on the move for the past six days travelling between 22m to 37m daily.

The pyramid-shaped rock, expected to be a lump of Martian basalt, has been named “Jake Matijevic” after the surface operations systems chief engineer for Mars Science Laboratory and the project’s Curiosity rover tragically died just after the vehicle touched down on August 6. The 64-year-old was a leading engineer for all of the previous NASA Mars rovers – Sojourner, Spirit and Opportunity.

Mars science Laboratory project scientist John Grotzinger told The Independent that the pyramid-shaped rock is not uncommon and is probably a product of wind erosion.

“Our general consensus view is that these are pieces of impact ejecta from an impact somewhere else, maybe outside of Gale Crater [where the rover landed], that throws a rock on to the plains, and it just goes on to sit here for a long period of time,” he said. “It weathers more slowly than the stuff that’s around it. So, that means it’s probably a harder rock,” he told The Independent.

During Curiosity’s two-year mission, researchers will use the rover’s 10 science instruments to assess whether the selected field site inside Gale Crater has offered environmental conditions favorable for microbial life.

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