Like the rest of us, NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover likes to watch the clouds roll by from time to time.
The car-size robot craned its neck skyward on May 7 and May 12, capturing gorgeous imagery of wispy clouds scudding through the Red Planet’s atmosphere.
The clouds seem to lie about 19 miles (31 kilometers) up and are likely composed of water ice, NASA officials said. Cirrus clouds here on Earth are also made of water ice, but that doesn’t mean the two planets’ atmospheres are similar; Mars’ air is 100 times thinner than that of Earth and is dominated by carbon dioxide, with just tiny traces of oxygen. (Earth’s atmosphere is 78% nitrogen, 21% oxygen and trace amounts of various other substances.)
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