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NASA Lander Powered By Missouri-Made Batteries Snaps “Selfie” On Mars

NASA’s new Mars InSight lander has snapped its first selfie on the Red Planet. The lander touched down on the surface of Mars in November, and was the culmination of years of work by thousands of individuals, and it is powered by batteries made right here in Missouri.

Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

Batteries made by Joplin, Missouri-based EaglePicher Technologies, power the NASA InSight Mars Lander. InSight has begun its study of the interior of Mars, with the aim of helping scientists understand how the planet formed, lessons that could help also shed light on Earth’s origins. It will listen for tremors or “marsquakes” and collect data that will be pieced together in a map of the interior of the red planet.

The lander took the selfie using the camera on its 5.9-foot-long (1.8 meters) robotic arm. The photo is a composite made up of 11 separate images, NASA officials said.

“This is the same imaging process used by NASA’s Curiosity rover mission, in which many overlapping pictures are taken and later stitched together,” the officials wrote in a statement describing the image. “Visible in the selfie are the lander’s solar panel and its entire deck, including its science instruments.”

You can check out our full coverage of the landing here.

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