Sol 372: Update On Curiosity From USGS Scientist Ken Herkenhoff: Record Drive!22 August 2013
The Sol 371 drive set a new MSL distance record for a single sol, 110 meters. The Sol 372 drive will be shorter, but includes the first test of autonomous navigation ("AutoNav") on the "B" computer. After the Sol 200 anomaly, when the rover swapped to the B computer, problems with the terrain meshes generated using the B Navcams were noted and additional camera calibration data acquired. These data have been analyzed and show that the pointing of the B Navcams (mounted below the A Navcams) varies slightly with temperature. The results have been modeled and used to update the flight software. Accounting for the thermal dependence of the B Navcam pointing has been particularly complex for the AutoNav software, which is now ready for flight testing. The Sol 372 AutoNav checkout is complicated by the desire to set up the rover for potential arm contact science observations this weekend.