The one-ton rover, which is about the size of an SUV, began beaming back pictures of the Martian landscape using its "fisheye" Hazard Avoidance Cameras almost immediately after landing Sunday from its 354-million-mile journey, NASA said.
The Curiosity Mars Rover landed on a formation called the Gale Crater, according to the Huffington Post.
John Grotzinger, project manager of NASA's Mars Science Laboratory mission, spoke about the image that was sent back to the Jet Propulsion Laboratory at California Institute of Technology in Pasadena.
"Curiosity's landing site is beginning to come into focus," Grotzinger said. "In the image, we are looking to the northwest. What you see on the horizon is the rim of Gale Crater. In the foreground, you can see a gravel field. The question is, where does this gravel come from? It is the first of what will be many scientific questions to come from our new home on Mars."
The Mars Science Laboratory said of the picture, "The cameras are looking directly into the sun, so the top of the image is saturated. Looking straight into the sun does not harm the cameras. The lines across the top are an artifact called 'blooming' that occurs in the camera's detector because of the saturation."
The next pictures to be released will be in full color, the Curiosity Rover "tweeted."
"FYI, I aim to send bigger, color pictures from Mars later this week once I've got my head up & Mastcam active #MSL"
To see the "bigger, color pictures" follow the Curiosity Rover on Twitter @MarsCuriosity where they will most likely be posted first.