NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit took this microscopic image of a target called "Bubbles" on a rock called "Champagne" after using its rock abrasion tool to brush away a coating of dust. The circular brushed area is about 5 centimeters (2 inches) across. This rock is different from rocks out on the plains of Gusev Crater but is similar to other rocks in this area of the "Columbia Hills" in that it has higher levels of phosphorus. Plagioclase, a mineral commonly found in igneous rocks, is also present in these rocks, according to analysis with the minature thermal emission spectrometer. By using the alpha particle X-ray spectrometer to collect data over multiple martian days, or sols, scientists are also beginning to get measurements of trace elements in these rocks. Spirit took the images that are combined into this mosaic on sol 354 (Dec. 30, 2004).


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