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Columbia Hills Mars was where Spirit rover landed.

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Columbia hills Mars.
The view of Columbia Hills from the Spirit landing site.

Mars Columbia Hills are a range of low hills inside Gusev crater on Mars. They were observed by the Mars Exploration Rover Spirit when it landed within the crater in 2004. They were promptly given an unofficial name by NASA since they were the most striking nearby feature on the surface. The hills lie approximately 3 kilometres (2 miles) away from the rover's original landing position. The range is named to memorialize the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster. On February 2, 2004, the individual peaks of the Columbia Hills were named after the seven astronauts who died in the disaster.

Mars Columbia Hills.
Unlabelled overhead view of the Columbia Hills.

Spirit is currently exploring the region between Husband Hill and McCool Hill.

The seven peaks are, from north to south:

  • Anderson Hill - named after Michael P. Anderson..
  • Brown Hill - named after David M. Brown. .
  • Chawla Hill - named after Kalpana Chawla. .
  • Clark Hill - named after Laurel Clark. .
  • Husband Hill - named after Rick D. Husband. .
  • McCool Hill - named after William C. McCool. .
  • Ramon Hill - named after Ilan Ramon. .

Surface of Mars.

The surface of Mars is thought to be primarily composed of basalt, based upon the Martian meteorite collection and orbital observations. There is some evidence that a portion of the Martian surface might be more silica-rich than typical basalt, perhaps similar to andesitic stones on Earth, though these observations may also be explained by silica glass. Much of the surface is deeply covered by iron(III) oxide dust as fine as talcum powder.

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