Deep-cut 'Star Trek' fans will know that if a Starfleet officer is lost and without communicators, they're supposed to try and trace the symbol of Starfleet in the ground in order to be rescued.
It happens in the first episode of 'Discovery', when Captain Georgiou and Lieutenant Burnham walk around a desert to trace the Starfleet symbol. The symbol is, of course, the actual logo for 'Star Trek', the TV series - but while it's mostly been confined to Earth, it's now gone to Mars.
The NASA Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, or MRO, posted a new picture of the surface of Mars that just so happens to feature a familiar-looking shape to sci-fi fans. Before you start thinking it's faked or that it was put there intentionally, there's actually a logical reason for it.
The shape we see is merely caused by coincidence, nothing else. The image is located in a large plain within the Hellas impact basin in the southern hemisphere of Mars, called the Hellas Planitia. The chevron-type shape is caused by dunes, wind and lava that's formed over millions of years. In fact, these chevron-type shapes are pretty common in this region of Mars.
Except only this one happens to look like the Starfleet symbol. The MRO has been in high orbit over Mars for the past 13 years and taken thousands of photos of the surface, all of which is sent to NASA for analysis and study.
Here's William Shatner (Captain Kirk) and LeVar Burton (Geordi LaForge) tweeting out the story.
— William Shatner (@WilliamShatner) June 13, 2019
Wait, what??!!? Whoa...
NASA orbiter spots 'Star Trek' symbol on Mars - CNN https://t.co/kIHTkDXK8h
— LeVar Burton (@levarburton) June 14, 2019