Astrogeology Science Center

Sol 84 update on Curiosity from USGS Scientist Ken Herkenhoff: SAM I Am

31 October 2012

We continue to prepare for the first delivery of a sample of Mars to SAM, the big analytical chemistry instrument on MSL. CheMin already analyzed its first soil sample, and SAM is next. The SAM "pre-conditioning" was successful, so the next scoop of soil will be delivered to SAM. As MAHLI PUL for the last time this week, I helped plan a "self-portrait" of the rover from the camera on the end of MSL's arm. It should yield a nice view of the entire rover, including the remote sensing mast that holds the cameras that usually take pictures of the rover: the stereo Mastcams and Navcams, and the ChemCam LIBS and camera combination. It addition, we planned more stereo images of the rocks right in front of the rover to extend the topographic map of the area surrounding them. This map is needed to ensure that the arm instruments (especially APXS) can be deployed on these rocks.