Wharton Ridge Panorama

Wharton Ridge Panorama
Wharton Ridge Panorama On October 7, 2016, NASA and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), home to all the American Mars rovers, issued the MER mission’s latest panorama named in honor of Robert A. Wharton (1951-2012). Heralded as an astrobiologist before the field officially came into existence, Wharton was a pioneer in the use of terrestrial analog environments, particularly in Antarctica, to study scientific problems related to the habitability of Mars. During his career, he also worked as a visiting senior scientist at NASA Headquarters; Research VP at the Desert Research Institute; Provost at Idaho State University; and President of the South Dakota School of Mines & Technology. The full extent of Wharton Ridge is visible, with the floor of Endeavour Crater beyond it and the far wall of the crater in the distant background. Near the right edge of the scene is the Lewis and Clark Gap, through which this rover crossed from Marathon Valley into Bitterroot Valley in September 2016. The scene is presented in enhanced color to make differences in surface materials more easily visible. NASA / JPL-Caltech / Cornell / Arizona State University

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