The drill has begun at a geologically interesting location nicknamed "The Kimberley". In this selfie, Curiosity appears to be leaning its "head" -- a suite of instruments including the Chemcam and Mastcam cameras to the side -- capturing the 5 km high Aeolis Mons ('Mount Sharp') on the horizon.

In coming days, the rover will conduct a preparatory "mini-drill" operation to check the area for readiness, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory said in a statement.

The hammering drill on Curiosity collects powdered sample material from rocks and then delivers portions to laboratory instruments onboard. The self portrait has been put together by Discovery News.


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