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NASA's Curiosity Rover Captures Rare 'Dust Devil' Moving Across Mars' Landscape

Screenshot of video posted on Instagram by NASA

Screenshot of video posted on Instagram by NASA

The video of the phenomenon in which whirlwinds are formed was filmed by NASA’s Curiosity Rover on August 9.

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) often lets us come close to interesting phenomena taking place in space with their photos and videos. Two days

ago, the US space agency posted a fascinating video on social media showing “dust devil” on Mars.

The video of the phenomenon in which whirlwinds are formed was filmed by NASA’s Curiosity Rover on August 9. The rover has been exploring Gale Crater on Mars since

2012.

“On August 9, one of the rover's navigation cameras captured the frames in this animation showing a spinning, columnar vortex of wind - also known as a ‘dust devil’ -moving across the landscape,” said NASA.

The space agency informed that the dust devil seems to be going above the rover’s present location, through small hills. The rover at that time was placed on Mount Sharp, a peak within Gale Crater.

The dust storm was approximately one-third to a half-mile away from the rover and it was estimated to be about 16 feet. NASA said that the height of the dust plume could not be ascertained as it disappeared past the top of the frame. However, it estimated that it

could have been 164 feet tall.

NASA’s Reconnaissance Orbiter, a spacecraft designed to study the geology and climate of the Red planet, captured a massive whirlwind through its camera, reported The

Indian Express.

According to the news website, such phenomena may offer obstacles in the plans of human establishment on the Red Planet. During the formation of whirlwind, dust

particles may come in close contact with each other, causing friction. Owing to this, they may produce electric field in the air because of the extremely dry climate of Mars. NASA in July lifted off Perseverance Rover from Florida’s Cape Canaveral onboard Atlas 5 rocket to search for signs of ancient microbial life on Mars.

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