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Martian hill named to honor Curiosity scientist

15 Apr 2021, 10:26 UTC
Martian hill named to honor Curiosity scientist
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Rafael Navarro Mountain, a hill at the base of Mount Sharp in Gale Crater on Mars. Its name honors mission scientist Rafael Navarro-González, who passed away from Covid-19-related complications on January 28, 2021. Image via NASA/ JPL-Caltech/ MSSS.
There’s been a lot of focus this month on NASA’s newest rover on Mars, Perseverance and its adorable sidekick, the Mars helicopter, Ingenuity, whose first flight has now been postponed to no earlier than next week. But meanwhile, the Curiosity rover – which has been on Mars since 2012 – is still busy, exploring the mesas and buttes at the base of Mount Sharp in Gale Crater. And there’s news about the Curiosity mission that strikes closer to home. On April 5, 2021, NASA announced that a craggy hump on Mount Sharp has been named Rafael Navarro Mountain. That’s in honor of a Curiosity mission scientist who died in January from Covid-19.
It’s one of those hills the along the rover’s path that has now been named after a scientist who was previously involved with the mission, Rafael Navarro-González, who recently passed away. “Rafael Navarro Mountain” is an informal name, and just one of thousands of names that the Curiosity team ...

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