Mars rover Perseverance for the first time recorded an atmospheric phenomenon that was previously observed only on Earth

(ORDO NEWS) — A NASA rover has photographed an atmospheric phenomenon that has never been seen before on Mars.

This happened on December 15, 2021, but only recently did NASA specialists pay attention to the images. It’s about the solar halo.

Halo is a group of atmospheric optical phenomena characterized by the occurrence of a secondary glow around a light source, usually in the form of a circle, ring, arc, light column or “diamond dust”.

In order to notice the effect of a halo around the Sun from the Earth’s surface, you need cold weather, the presence of cirrus clouds and high humidity.

Under such conditions, hexagonal ice crystals form in the atmosphere, which can deform sunlight. Light reflected and refracted by ice crystals is often decomposed into a spectrum, which makes the halo look like a rainbow.

Mars rover Perseverance for the first time recorded an atmospheric phenomenon that was previously observed only on Earth 2
Solar halo on Earth

The researchers had doubts and tested whether the rover’s camera could create a bright ring by reflecting light off the lenses, but analysis of Perseverance’s entire group of images of the Martian sky showed that the Sun and halo appeared at a different point in the frame each time.

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