China has released new images from its rover Zhurong, which began orbiting Mars in late May. One of the photos is a beautiful selfie of Jurong, posing next to the landing platform. The “group photo of the tour,” as the Chinese National Space Administration calls it in a blog post, was taken with a small wireless camera that the rover placed on the surface before returning to line up for the shot as an excited parent.
Jurong also took a picture of the landing platform itself, showing the ramp on which the rover traveled, the Chinese flag, and if you look closely to the left of the flag, the mascots for the Beijing Winter Olympics.
There are more photos in the Twitter thread below linked here, including a panorama that shows the horizon of the Red Planet in the distance from the rover, along with scars on the surface from the expulsion of fuel during landing.
Cool panorama here from Jurong, showing the charming horizon, but also areas affected by the passivation of the landing platform (dumping the remaining fuel to prevent an explosion), north and south (also seen in the photos from Tianwen-1 & MRO from orbit). pic.twitter.com/M3HbkGS6P0
– Andrew Jones (@AJ_FI) June 11, 2021
Jurong joined NASA’s Mars Constellation last month (although the rovers are more than a thousand miles away), making China the second country to land and control a rover on the planet. It is expected to continue research for about 90 days and will capture more images while analyzing Martian climate and geology.
Persistence also sent a few of its own glamorous photos in April, although it used a robotic arm (selfie stick if you like) instead of leaving the camera and moving away from it. This is a family photo of both the rover and its small helicopter, satellite, ingenuity. NASA details how the selfie was taken in this video blog post.
And here is the “face of Perseverance” against the calm panorama of Mars. The planet may be a lonely place, but it creates a very picturesque background.