Curiosity rover captures stunning image of blue sunset on Mars

The Martian sunset, as captured by the Curiosity rover on April 15, 2015. (Photo: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS/Texas A&M Univ.)

Next time you find yourself watching a setting sun, imagine what it would be like if the sky was awash with blues and grays rather than reds, pinks, purples and yellow we’re accustomed to here on Earth.

Having trouble picturing it? Check out this Martian sunset:

NASA’s Curiosity rover recently sent back the image of the sun setting in a murky blue sky at the end of the mission’s 956th Martian day (or sol) on April 15.

The sunsets on Mars are blue due to dust particles on the planet that are sized to let blue light through more efficiently than other colors.

“When the blue light scatters off the dust, it stays closer to the direction of the sun than light of other colors does,” Mark Lemmon, a member of Curiosity’s science team, said in a statement. “The rest of the sky is yellow to orange, as yellow and red light scatter all over the sky instead of being absorbed or staying close to the sun.”

The Martian day lasts 24 hours, 39 minutes.

Watch the full thing here from Space.com:

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