A picture postcard from Mars, courtesy of the Curiosity rover

While known as the “red planet” for good reason, Mars takes on a different appearance depending on the time of day as seen in this “picture postcard” view from the Curiosity rover. Climbing the lower slopes of Mount Sharp in Gale Crater, Curiosity paused on 8 April to capture two multi-image panoramas, one at 9:20 a.m. local Mars time and the other at 3:40 p.m. The black-and-white images were beamed back to Earth and stitched together. Analysts then added colour and merged the two images to create an artistic rendering of the morning view in blue tones, the afternoon in orange and a combination of the two in green. Thanks to an extremely clear sky, the rim of Gale Crater is clearly visible 30 to 40 kilometres away (18 to 25 miles), along with the top of a mountain in the far distance, some 80 kilometres away (54 miles). Click the image below for a larger view.

Image: NASA/JPL-Caltech