NASA captures Unique Blue Sunset on Red Planet: Mars

The title makes me recall my favorite song entitled, “Red Roses for a Blue Lady.” While the song is emotionally romantic I can’t help but think what it would be like to witness such unique and wonderful event, in Mars mind you not pictures beamed by satellite feed.

NASA has shared a delightful picture of the sunset on the planet Mars. The @MarsCuriosity Twitter account posted the amazing picture Friday night with these words from “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” by T.S. Eliot: “Let us go then, you and I/When the evening is spread out against the sky.” By the morning of Monday, it had been retweeted almost 10,000 times and more than 10,000 made it their favorite.

In an announcement, NASA stated:

NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover recorded this  sun setting at the end of the mission’s 956th Martian day, or sol (April 15, 2015), from where the rover is located in Gale Crater.

This was the first sunset seen in color by Curiosity. The picture originates from the left-eye cam of the rover’s Mast Camera ‘Mastcam’. The color has been corrected and white-balanced to get rid of camera artifacts. Mastcam sees color comparatively to what human eyes see, despite the fact that it is really somewhat less sensitive to blue than people’s eyes.

Dust in the Martian environment has fine particles that allow blue light to infiltrate the atmosphere more proficiently than longer-wavelength hues. That causes the blue colors in the blended light originating from the sun to stay closer to sun’s part of the sky, contrasted with the more extensive dispersing of yellow and red colors. The impact is most maintained closer to nightfall, when light from the sun goes through a longer path in the atmosphere than it does at noontime.




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