(CBS News) More photos of Mars have been released by NASA. A panoramic color photo of the red planet's Gale Crater reveals the environment the Curiosity rover will traverse through.
The 79-image mosaic of photos taken by the Curiosity rover's Mastcam show a barren landscape and dusty horizon. Taken on Aug. 9, it took about an hour for the images to reach Earth. When all of the images are finished downloading, NASA will have 130 photos with 1,200 x 1,200 pixel resolution.
According to NASA, the black areas on the panorama photo are images that have not yet been returned by the Curiosity rover.
NASA says geologists plan to examine the area uncovered by the blast of the Mars Science Laboratory's rockets. The space agency says that the loose debris reveals underlying materials, most notable is "a well-defined, topmost layer that contains fragments of rock embedded in a matix of finer material."