Where In The Universe Challenge #105

Ready for another Where In The Universe Challenge? Here’s #105! Take a look and see if you can name where in the Universe this image is from. Give yourself extra points if you can name the spacecraft responsible for the image. We provide the image today, but won’t reveal the answer until tomorrow. This gives you a chance to mull over the image and provide your answer/guess in the comment section. Please, no links or extensive explanations of what you think this is — give everyone the chance to guess.

UPDATE: The answer has now been posted below.

On July 20, 1976 the Viking 1 Lander separated from the the Viking Orbiter and touched down at Chryse Planitia. This image was taken on the 28th sol or Martian day of the mission. As you may know, the Viking 1 lander has now been surpassed in having the record of longest surface mission on Mars — the Opportunity just passed Viking 1’s duration of six years and 116 days operating on the surface of Mars.

The imaging team from Viking were basically learning on the fly on how to calibrate the color for the images, so some early images tended to show “blue” sky, while later reconstructions, trying to account for out-of-band contributions in each filter, tended to show a “red” sky, and often an “orange” surface. Owing to calibration uncertainties, the exact reconstruction of Viking Lander color images remains more or less an art. But what a heady time that must have been in 1976, having two landers on Mars, both working successfully!

Learn more about the Viking lander images and mosaics here.

Check back next week for another WITU challenge!

14 Replies to “Where In The Universe Challenge #105”

  1. Well.. first instincts were it was a trap!

    but no, its Mars…. by my favorite, the Viking Lander. 🙂

  2. Definitely Mars, and I’m guessing pre- Mars Exploration Rovers,…
    So probably Viking.

  3. I concur it is Viking on Mars, but as yet I do not know whether it is Lunae Palus or Margaritifer Sinus from V1 or V2.


  4. Mars, of course. Probably Viking? The stuff in the foreground doesn’t look like anything recent.

  5. I know this one!

    Heathrow Airport, under volcanic ash. Taken by a tourist.

  6. It’s the view of Chryse Planitia landing site from Viking Lander 1.

  7. Atacama Desert, South America, Chile

    Probably in the brilliant Valle de la luna, near San Pedro de Atacama

  8. bit suspicious of this one, seems far, far, far too easy. I’ll go for the studio in hollywood where they faked the moon landings! (kidding)

  9. Not a Gorilla. More likely Bigfoot. I am pretty sure he is being chased by Martians who emerged from the invisible crystal palace near the Face on Mars.

  10. Utah from a Ford Aerostar. Look at the place, completely devoid of civilization, where else could it be.

Comments are closed.