Just days after performing a spectacularly delicate landing watched by millions of people worldwide, NASA's rover Curiosity has returned the first full-resolution images of the Martian surface from the navigation cameras on the rover's mast.
The mast, Curiosity's head, was deployed after landing, and the dual navigation cameras have medium-angle, 45-degree fields of views and are capable of returning three-dimensional information about the Martian terrain. They are designed to survey the landscape broadly and quickly and are capable of looking all around and also up and down.
The view seen here, near the pebbly rim of Gale Crater, is very mountainous due to erosion, with the middle ground composed of low-relief scarps and plains. The foreground shows two distinct zones of excavation likely carved out by blasts from the rover's descent stage thrusters.