Stand on the Red Planet in NASA’s stunning, new panoramic shot of Mars

Contributed by
Feb 1, 2016, 5:53 PM EST

It’ll still be a while until we actually set foot on Mars, but a new 360-degree panoramic shot of the Red Planet is about the closest you can actually get without hijacking a rocket and heading up there yourself.

The shot was taken by NASA's Mars Curiosity rover, then stitched together to create a 360-degree panoramic that is semi-explorable (and also a bit awkward, since it was stitched together). According to Popular Science, the video was created by stitching together 57 separate still images captured by the Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) on the end of the rover's robotic arm. The shot shows off the Martian sky, as well as a large sand dune, around where Curiosity is currently exploring.

As we slowly slouch toward a manned Mars mission, content like this is crucial to help stoke the flames of curiosity (no pun intended). Here’s hoping its just the first of many NASA videos of this kind. Hmm, too bad there wasn’t an Oculus Rift rig strapped onto Curiosity when it was launched …

Check out the panoramic clip below and enjoy your trip:


Use your smart phone to explore Mars with me in 360 degrees. #FromWhereIStand

Posted by NASA’s Curiosity Mars Rover on Saturday, January 30, 2016

(Via NASA, Popular Science)