Sundials for Mars: what for?

Mars sundials model

In 1997 professor Tyler Nordgren from University of Redlands and a group of six scientists, astronomers, educators and artists have decided to create a digital camera, that can be calibrated in atmosphere of Mars. A special dial of sundials was desined for so unpredictable calibration. Motto for the first Moon sundials was "Two worlds, One sun". But only in 2012 Mars mission did succeed, and Mars sundials on the board of Curiosity rover has reached the surface of Mars.

For taking realictic pictures four basic calibration colours (red, dreen, blue and yellow) are painted on the dial. Central gnomon allows to measure Sun's height and azimuth, as well as compare basic colors lightened and shadowed.

Plate with really touching wishes and pictures made by children, who were also involved in the project Mars Spirit 2001. Motto on the sundials, which are now on Mars with Curiosity is "To Mars to explore".