Astrogeology Science Center

New Names for a Mons and a Tholus on Mars

4 March 2013

The IAU Working Group for Planetary System Nomenclature has approved new names for two features on Mars: Aonia Mons and Aonia Tholus. For more information, see the IAU Gazetteer of Planetary Nomenclature.

Sol 202 Update On Curiosity From USGS Scientist Ken Herkenhoff: Plan B

1 March 2013

As the MSL engineering team continues to study the Sol 200 anomaly, tactical science planning has been cancelled through this weekend. The rover has two computers, and has been running on the A side until yesterday, when commands were sent to boot up the B side. The rover is safe in this… Read More

Sol 201 Update On Curiosity From USGS Scientist Ken Herkenhoff: Memory Problem

28 February 2013

During Sol 200, MSL was unable to save data to part of its memory, so the rover stopped what it was doing and waited for more instructions. The engineering team at JPL is analyzing the available telemetry to determine how to recover from this anomaly, and the Sol 201 plan was cancelled. The… Read More

Sol 200 Update On Curiosity From USGS Scientist Ken Herkenhoff: Quiet Day

27 February 2013

I'm scheduled as MAHLI/MARDI uplink lead 4 days this week. The first planning day, for Sol 200, was rather quiet for me, with just a single MAHLI activity (pulling old images out of the camera's memory and preparing less-compressed versions). Most of the rover power continues to be used to… Read More

Mapper Tip: ArcMap 10.x Snap to Sketch

25 February 2013

Mapper Tip: Have you ever needed to snap to a line that you are currently editing (e.g. crater rim or closed basin)? At version 10, ArcMap introduced "snap to sketch" to allow this capability. see: http://bit.ly/Snap2Sketch

Sol 197 Update On Curiosity From USGS Scientist Ken Herkenhoff: Two-Sol Planning

25 February 2013

For the first time, I was SOWG Chair for a 2-sol planning session on Saturday. Earlier this month, the MSL project stopped scheduling tactical operations on Sundays, to give the team a break once a week. So we've been planning 2 sols at a time on Saturdays, which can be challenging, but it went… Read More

Sol 196 Update On Curiosity From USGS Scientist Ken Herkenhoff: Power Limits

22 February 2013

Planning was more difficult today because of power limitations. The top priority for Sol 196 is to drop some of the drill sample into SAM and analyze it overnight. SAM is the largest instrument on MSL, and it requires lots of power to run. As usual, the tactical science team proposed some… Read More

Sol 195 Update on Curiosity from USGS Scientist Ken Herkenhoff: Feeding Chemin

21 February 2013

After taking a break from tactical operations for an MSL science team meeting (and a bit of vacation) last week, I'm back on as SOWG chair for Sol 195 planning. The most exciting part of this plan is "feeding" some of the first drill sample to Chemin. There wasn't much room to add additional… Read More

The Atlantic Magazine Features Astrogeology

19 February 2013

The Atlantic featured the Astrogeology Science Center in an article titled, When We Blew Up Arizona to Simulate the Moon. The article delves into the astronaut training and crater making that occurred at Cinder Lake in preparation for the Apollo Moon landings. For more information, see the RPIF… Read More

Yearly Planetary Geologic Mappers Meeting

15 February 2013

The yearly Planetary Geologic  Mappers meeting will be held at the Smithsonian Institute in Washington D.C. on Wednesday, June 19 through Friday, June 21. Please see flyer at http://bit.ly/PGM2013_FlyerThe yearly Planetary Geologic Mappers meeting will be held at the Smithsonian Institute in… Read More