Astrogeology Science Center

Sols 1256-1261: Driving Around the Dune

19 February 2016

Apologies for the lateness of this week’s update: The rover is fine, gradually working its way around the north end of a large dune. I’m just an absent-minded blogger with too many other things going on! We started this week on Tuesday with the Sol 1256 plan. This included some long… Read More

Sols 1253-1255: Full plan

12 February 2016

The dune sand samples were dumped onto the ground, but it appears that the sample was partly blown by the wind.  There is enough sample left to investigate with various instruments, so the Sol 1253 plan starts with ChemCam passive spectra and Mastcam multispectral observations of the dump… Read More

Sols 1251-1252: Dumping sand samples

11 February 2016

The short Sol 1250 drive completed successfully, placing the rover in position for contact science on the bedrock outcrop of interest.  We're planning 2 sols today and 3 sols tomorrow to get the rover through the upcoming holiday weekend.  On Sol 1251, ChemCam will observe a bright… Read More

Sol 1250: Bumping for Contact Science

10 February 2016

The Sol 1249 drive went well, leaving the rover in an area with many nice outcrops of bright bedrock.  A large outcrop, partly visible at the left side of the image above, was chosen as the target for dumping the sand sample and examining it this weekend.  So, after ChemCam and… Read More

Sol 1249: Twelve kilometers and counting

9 February 2016

The rover has traversed over 12 km since landing, and another drive is planned for Sol 1249.  The tactical planning team decided to forgo targeted remote science observations before the drive to allow more time for driving.  The goal is to get the vehicle to a location that will… Read More

Sol 1248: Re-planning a Drive

8 February 2016

It's not Groundhog Day, but the drive planned for Sol 1247 will be attempted again on Sol 1248.  Due to a minor sequencing error, the arm activities that were planned for the morning of Sol 1247 were precluded.  Because the arm was not stowed that sol, the drive did not execute and the… Read More

Sols 1245-1247: Analyzing Murray formation bedrock

5 February 2016

On Sol 1244, Curiosity bumped 2 meters forward to get to a nice patch of bedrock.  The focus of the weekend plan is to study typical Murray formation bedrock, do some targeted remote sensing, and then drive towards the Naukluft Plateau. The 3-sol weekend plan starts by using the DRT to clear… Read More

Sol 1244: Bump, Set… Scuff!

4 February 2016

Today’s plan is focused on bumping towards a bedrock target to set us up for contact science in the weekend plan.  As we bump forward, we’ll use the rear wheels to create one last scuff in Namib Dune, which we’ll image as we drive away. I was the GSTL today, and we had a busy… Read More

Sol 1243: Getting ready to leave Namib Dune

3 February 2016

The contact science activities on Sol 1242 were successful, which completed our investigation at the Namib Dune sampling location.  I love the above Navcam image, which shows just how close we were able to get MAHLI to the dump piles, followed by the really high-resolution MAHLI image! … Read More

Sol 1242: Last analyses of the dump piles

2 February 2016

Today was the last day for science activities at Namib Dune, as we’re planning to drive away on Sol 1243.  It’s fun looking at the disturbed sand in the workspace, and realizing how much we’ve done here (is it just me, or does it look like a big sandbox full of scoops, dumps… Read More