Google+ Mars Travel: Opportunity Begins Exploration of Odyssey Crater

Opportunity Begins Exploration of Odyssey Crater

Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity has reached the rim of Endeavour Crater culminating a journey that has lasted three years. It went directly past Spirit Point, the rally point named after its twin rover Spirit and immediately to Odyssey Crater. Odyssey Crater is small (~20 meter) and at the lowest point along the rim of the much larger Endeavour Crater.
Odyssey Crater
It is now only a matter of days until Opportunity starts making discoveries about the rocks around Odyssey Crater, which are different than the rocks on Mars that have been examined thus far. As I explained in a  previous post:

The clays present in an around Endeavour Crater  are different than any found by a Mars Rover before. They imply a warm and wet environment, much like clays examined by Opportunity at other sites, but what makes them different is their low-acidity level. It is thought that warmth, moisture, and low-acidity levels provide a suitable environment for the development of life. So while Mars Rover Opportunity will examine the clay and determine its properties, it will also be looking for signs of tiny fossils, which would provide evidence of past life on Mars. While no one expects to find evidence of past life in the clays around Endeavour Crater, it would be foolish of us not to look for it.

Something Remarkable Found Already?

Despite the fact that Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity just arrived at Odyssey Crater last night, it has already discovered an anomaly that might end up being an amazing discovery.
Those examining the images sent back last night came across one that seemed unusual.

If you look in the lower left you will see what looks like something shiny protruding out of the ground.

Whatever it is, it certainly is intriguing! It seems to be something new and never before seen. It only remains to be seen what exactly it is! Maybe it will turn out to be nothing more than a protruding rock, but who knows! Regardless, Opportunity is sure to be making a lot of great discoveries in the days and weeks to follow. The future looks so promising for Opportunity.

You can be sure I will keep updating everyone about Opportunity and the developments that come, so keep checking back!


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