Taking advantage of extra solar energy collected during the day, NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit settled in for an evening of stargazing, photographing the two moons of Mars as they crossed the night sky. "It is incredibly cool to be running an observatory on another planet," said planetary scientist Jim Bell of Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y., lead scientist for the panoramic cameras on Spirit and Opportunity. In this inverted-black-and-white animation, both martian moons, Deimos on the left and Phobos on the right, travel across the night sky in front of the constellation Sagittarius. Part of Sagittarius resembles an upside-down teapot. Phobos is the darker object on the right; Deimos is on the left. Spirit acquired these enhanced-brightness images with the panoramic camera on the night of sol 585 (Aug. 26, 2005).
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