Solar eclipses are wonderful events on Earth – but like a solar eclipse on Mars† While most of us can never see one with our own eyes, the NASA Perseverance rover records one with little detail. When it landed on Mars in February 2021, Perseverance was given a simple (more challenging) goal: to collect images of pink marcians that could contain traces of ancient life. It takes years to figure out the possible life forms, because a year confirmed, the rover has already picked up eight signs and is on its way to get more.
When you’re not wandering Mars looking for new models, Perseverance spends most of the time shooting their arrows. And unsurprisingly, this resulted in some discoveries that are actually liquid or queixo. Perseverance shared photos of birth and after the Martian sun, huge mountains, strangely shaped rock outcrops and rugged hills of undulating terrain. It’s like there’s an ascent into the front row of the Red Planet without leaving Earth exactly, and it’s been nothing short of impressive.
Somehow, persistence continues to increase as time goes on on Mars. On April 2, NASA received dozens of new photos from Perseverance — all showing a solar eclipse on Mars. The above image is one of the best photos of the rover, clearly showing Mars’ two Phobos in front of the sun. It’s a fantastic vision of how far the sun is from Mars and a reflection of how small Fobos is. While a solar eclipse on Earth can see the moon blocking almost the entire sun, Phobos appears to be a small flying point in front of it.
In addition to dozens of static images, NASA also made a video of the solar eclipse of Mars. One thing is to see a single image of Fobos in front of the sun, but it’s even more incredible to actually see it pass him by. The 49 second clip shows Fobos starting his day with Sol in the top right corner. He slowly makes his way to the bottom and to the exit, eventually taking in the view to complete the rest of his work. What’s also fascinating is that the video shows the solar eclipse of Mars in real time. Because Fobos is about 157 times smaller than our lunar project, the eclipse is significantly shorter than what we’re used to on Earth.
And we’re not the only ones impressed by the video. Commenting on the clip, Perseverance cameraman Rachel Howson says: “I knew it was going to be okay, but I didn’t expect it to be incredible. It’s like a birthday or holiday when they arrive. You know what’s going on, but there’s still an element of surprise when you get it end product.”
As with all things Perseverance does, these photos and videos are of scientific interest. Phobos is expected to settle on the surface of Mars for tens of thousands of years. Studying a solar eclipse will clearly allow scientists to better understand the moon’s activity and its gradual decline toward destruction. And of scientific importance there is also an incredible technical conquest. If you tell someone that there are years when you can witness a solar eclipse in Mars just as it turns out, they called or teriam louco. Thanks to Perseverance and the NASA team, this is the world we live in today. And it is unbelievable.
Source: NASA (1), (2)