Click on image to view a five-frame sequence of the location where the spacecraft's heat shield hit the ground.  Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Univ. of Arizona

Click on image to view a five-frame sequence of the location where the spacecraft’s heat shield hit the ground.
Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Univ. of Arizona

A series of observations from Mars orbit show how dark blast zones that were created during the August 2012 landing of NASA’s Curiosity rover have faded inconsistently.

Images were taken by the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera on NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. The observations were taken on multiple dates from Curiosity’s landing to last month.

After fading for about two years, the pace of change slowed and some of the scars may have even darkened again.

One purpose for repeated follow-up imaging of Curiosity’s landing area has been to check whether scientists could model the fading and predict how long it would take for the scars to disappear.

Meanwhile, Curiosity is in full-sleuthing mode, inspecting newly found features on the Red Planet.

NASA's Mars rover Curiosity acquired this image using its Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI), located on the turret at the end of the rover's robotic arm, on March 27, 2015, Sol 937. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS

NASA’s Mars rover Curiosity acquired this image using its Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI), located on the turret at the end of the rover’s robotic arm, on March 27, 2015, Sol 937.
Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS

This image was taken by Navcam: Right B onboard NASA's Mars rover Curiosity on Sol 937 (2015-03-27). Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

This image was taken by Navcam: Right B onboard NASA’s Mars rover Curiosity on Sol 937 (2015-03-27).
Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

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