Astrogeology Science Center

Sol 581 Update On Curiosity From USGS Scientist Ken Herkenhoff: Fault and New Targets

24 March 2014

The Sol 578 activities were interrupted by another arm "fault" caused by a command error, but this error is well understood, and the rover is healthy and ready to resume arm activities on Sol 581. First, ChemCam and Mastcam will observe new targets on the outcrop in front of the rover, then the… Read More

Sol 578 - 580 Update On Curiosity From USGS Scientist Ken Herkenhoff: Dedicated to Recovery

24 March 2014

There was a minor problem with the Sol 576 imaging of CHIMRA that prevented the rest of that sol's plan from completing, and concerns about the safety of the remote sensing mast prevented uplink of the Sol 577 commands. So the rover did very little on Sol 577, but the tactical planning team on… Read More

Sol 577 Update On Curiosity From USGS Scientist Ken Herkenhoff: Look to the Sky for Clarity

21 March 2014

Planning is still restricted, so the Sol 577 plan includes only untargeted science observations. I focused on ChemCam RMI images of the sky for calibration, which made it into the plan as desired. A large Mastcam mosaic of the Kimberley area was also planned, along with more CheMin and SAM… Read More

Sol 576 Update On Curiosity From USGS Scientist Ken Herkenhoff: "thwack"

20 March 2014

The Sol 574 post-drive images show nice outcrops in front of the rover, suitable for contact science. This image shows the favored rock face for contact science at upper left. The Sol 576 plan starts with a ChemCam observation of this rock face, plus a Mastcam stereo mosaic of the outcrop. … Read More

Sol 575 Update On Curiosity From USGS Scientist Ken Herkenhoff: Out of Synch

19 March 2014

MSL and Pasadena times are out of synch, so planning is restricted and Sol 575 is an untargeted science sol while we wait for the data needed to drive again. CheMin, ChemCam and SAM will perform calibration and related activities in preparation for the upcoming analyses at the "Kimberley"… Read More

Sol 574 Update On Curiosity From USGS Scientist Ken Herkenhoff: No Targets to Reach, Let's Drive

18 March 2014

I was traveling again, so was not involved in Sol 574 planning. The Sol 574 tactical planning team considered the option of contact science before driving, but with no interesting targets in the arm workspace, they decided to acquire more ChemCam and Mastcam data instead. Then a drive of about… Read More

Sol 571 - 573 Update On Curiosity From USGS Scientist Ken Herkenhoff: APXS the Observation Tray

17 March 2014

We had the option to perform contact science on Sol 571, but there were not compelling targets within the arm's reach, so an APXS integration on the observation tray was substituted. It had been over a year since such a measurement, which will be useful as a baseline before another sample is… Read More

Sol 569 Update On Curiosity From USGS Scientist Ken Herkenhoff: Toward "The Kimberley"

14 March 2014

The rover moved about 74 meters on Sol 568, and a ~100 m drive along the path toward "The Kimberley" (shown on image) is planned for Sol 569. Mars time continues to shift later relative to Earth time, so no planning is scheduled for Sol 569 to allow a full weekend plan to be developed tomorrow.… Read More

Sol 568 Update On Curiosity From USGS Scientist Ken Herkenhoff: Data Squeeze

12 March 2014

MRO is still in safe mode, but enough data were received via Mars Odyssey to allow another drive to be planned on Sol 568, about 70 meters. Again, the data were received late in the day Pacific time, so there was not enough time to plan science observations beyond the standard background and… Read More

Sol 567 Update On Curiosity From USGS Scientist Ken Herkenhoff: Late Slide Sol - Only Driving

11 March 2014

After I finished my SOWG Chair shifts last week, I took some time off to celebrate my son's birthday. While I was away, the MSL planning schedule transitioned into "late slide sols" because data from the rover arrive late in the day Pacific time. In order to preserve the ability to send commands… Read More