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Zoom around in this massive Mars mosaic

Stargazers must peep at this enormous 29,000x7,000-pixel panorama captured on the surface of Mars by the Curiosity rover.

A simple zoom into the Gigapan Mars image provided an unreal close-up of martian terrain for this author. (Click to enlarge.)
Screenshot by Christopher MacManus/CNET

When Curiosity touched down on Mars earlier this month, we Earthlings experienced an out of this world multimedia experience showing off amazing angles of the Red Planet. A few days ago, NASA released perhaps the best Mars panorama yet, which simply blows away the rest, at least in terms of size.

The 360-degree color mosaic, hosted on Gigapan, includes more than 140 images stitched together for a supersize 0.21-gigapixel image from the surface of Mars. The sheer size of the image -- at an astounding 29,000x7,000 pixels -- gives onlookers the ability to zoom around and see some extreme detail on the barren red world.

As a social bonus, viewers can capture scenes from the panorama and link those images to other Gigapan users. Many people believe they spotted pieces of plastic, UFOs, bones, and other foreign objects in the massive picture, which surely has Orson Welles giggling in his grave.

(Via Pop Photo)