Astrogeology Science Center

Sol 1064: Dump pre-sieve sample

3 August 2015

The activities planned for last weekend completed successfully, including sample dropoff to CheMin and analysis of the minerals present.  So the Sol 1064 plan includes dumping the portion of the drill sample that has not been sieved and Mastcam, ChemCam, MAHLI, and APXS observations of the… Read More

Sols 1061-1063: Sample dropoff to CheMin

31 July 2015

 This morning, the MSL operations team was very happy to see that drilling into Buckskin was successful!  The weekend plan therefore has more arm activities, including transferring the sample to the scoop for inspection.  But first, the ChemCam RMI will take pictures of… Read More

Sol 1060: GO for drilling!

30 July 2015

It’s another exciting day on Mars!  Curiosity is investigating some high-silica targets at an outcrop named “Lion.”  The team selected the “Buckskin” target to drill, and we successfully completed a mini drilling test yesterday (shown in the above MAHLI… Read More

Sol 1059: Drill Testing and Analyzing "Ch-paa-qn"

29 July 2015

Today the main event is a “mini-start hole”, which is the name for a new type of initial drilling test that we are trying out on the target “Buckskin”. This test will drill a small hole in the rock to help determine whether it is safe to go ahead with the full hole. In… Read More

Names Approved for Two Features on Mars: Talas and Navua Valles

28 July 2015

The IAU Working Group for Planetary System Nomenclature has approved names for two features on Mars, Talas (a crater), and Navua Valles. For more information, see the Gazetteer of Planetary Nomenclature.

LIFT - Load Image from Footprint Toolbar for ArcMap

28 July 2015

The ArcMap 10.2 Python Addin called Load Image from Footprint Toolbar (LIFT, v0.2) was just released for testing. This simple ArcMap add-in loads one or more images from a footprint vector polygon file which has a text field with the image's local path and filename in the field.  To… Read More

Sol 1057-1058: Getting Ready to Drill Buckskin

27 July 2015

The “bump” over the weekend was successful, so we are right where we want to be to attempt drilling at “Buckskin” in the “Lion” area. I was on duty as ChemCam sPUL (science payload uplink lead) today, and it was a fun day to be on duty. Sometimes it can be… Read More

Sol 1055-1056: Closing in on High-Silica Targets

24 July 2015

The main priority in today’s plan is to nudge the rover a bit closer to the target “Buckskin”, which is in the area where we have discovered rocks high in silica and hydrogen. But before we do that, ChemCam and Mastcam will observe the targets “Marent”,… Read More

Name Approved for Crater on Ceres: Kait

24 July 2015

The IAU Working Group for Planetary System Nomenclature has approved the name Kait for a small crater on Ceres. For more information, see the Gazetteer of Planetary Nomenclature.

Sols 1051-1054: Approaching "Lion"

22 July 2015

After driving just over 20 meters, the rover stopped 4.4 meters short of the Sol 1049 drive goal because the vehicle pitch exceeded the 15-degree limit set by the rover drivers.  So another 6.4-meter drive toward the bright outcrop of interest, dubbed "Lion," was planned for Sol… Read More