Astrogeology Science Center

Sol 998: Contact Science at Marias Pass

27 May 2015

By Lauren Edgar A short bump on Sol 997 put Curiosity in a great position to investigate a few different rock units in Marias Pass, using the instruments on the rover’s arm.  The 2.5 m drive brings our total odometry to 10,599 m.  With the upcoming solar conjunction (Mars will be… Read More

Names Approved for Two Montes on Mars

27 May 2015

The IAU Working Group for Planetary System Nomenclature has approved names for two features on Mars: Coprates Montes and Nectaris Montes. For more information, see the Gazetteer of Planetary Nomenclature.

Sol 997: Preparing for contact science

26 May 2015

By Lauren Edgar Curiosity spent the weekend characterizing the terrain and bedrock exposed in Marias Pass.  Curiosity drove 33 m further into Marias Pass, bringing our total odometry to 10,596 m.   The drive set us up perfectly to investigate the contact between two different… Read More

Sols 993-996: A long weekend at Marias Pass

22 May 2015

By Lauren Edgar  On Sol 992 Curiosity took a short drive into Marias Pass to get a better look at the terrain ahead.  The 6 m drive on Sol 992 brought our total odometry to 10,562 m.  It also put Curiosity in a great position for targeted science over the long holiday weekend. The 4… Read More

Sol 992: Marias Pass

21 May 2015

By Lauren Edgar Curiosity conquered the hill on Sol 991, and we were rewarded with a beautiful view of Marias Pass.  The 22 m drive on Sol 991 brings our total odometry to 10,556 m. In today’s plan, Curiosity will acquire ChemCam and Mastcam observations on the targets… Read More

Sol 991: Taking the high road

20 May 2015

By Lauren Edgar After assessing a few different drive paths to deal with the challenging terrain, the team decided to drive uphill to avoid crossing the ripples near Jocko Butte.  On Sol 990, Curiosity drove 52 m back towards Mt. Shields, which puts our total odometry at 10,533… Read More

Sol 990: ChemCam Autofocus Software

19 May 2015

by Ken Herkenhoff Testing of the new ChemCam automatic focusing software continues to go well--the instrument is returning well-focused data of the quality we got used to early in the mission.  The MAHLI test data acquired on Sol 989 are also looking good; here's an image of the penny… Read More

Sol 987-989: Back at Jocko Butte

18 May 2015

by Ryan AndersonThe backwards drive on sol 986 was successful, and over the weekend, Curiosity drove back toward “Jocko Butte”. Before the drive on sol 987, ChemCam had a 5x1 observation of the target “Mill”, accompanied by a Mastcam image. Mastcam also took a small 2x2… Read More

Sol 986: Finding a Path

15 May 2015

by Ryan AndersonWe’ve been having trouble with the path we originally wanted to take through the sand toward the interesting geology at “Mt. Stimson”, so in today’s plan we are going to take a careful look around to identify better routes. Mastcam has a 13x3 mosaic in the… Read More

Sol 985: High Tilt

14 May 2015

by Ken Herkenhoff Once again, excessive wheel slippage prevented MSL from driving as far as planned, so the tactical team decided to take a break from driving to allow various options to be studied in more detail.  The rover is tilted 21 degrees, the highest tilt of the mission so far,… Read More