After sitting still on Mars for two weeks, NASA’s Curiosity rover is finally making moves. The car-sized robot took its first spin on the Martian surface on Aug. 22 and another on Aug. 27.
The rover’s track marks from both drives left behind two doughnuts to form an infinity shape, shown in the first photo.
Curiosity’s wheels have holes that leave an unique imprint to help scientists measure how far the rover has traveled.
“The purpose of the pattern is to create features in the terrain that can be used to visually measure the precise distance between drives,” Matt Heverly, the lead rover driver for Curiosity at JPL, said in a press release.
The holes on all six wheels spell out “JPL” in Morse Code through a series of dots and dashes: .— (J), .–. (P), and .-.. (L). This an acronym for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., where the Mars mission is managed.
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