Astrogeology Science Center

Names Approved for Features on the Moon: Hildegard, Hildegard K, Poincaré E, and Poincaré F

29 February 2016

The IAU Working Group for Planetary System Nomenclature has approved names for four features on the Moon: Hildegard, Hildegard K, Poincare E, and Poincare F. The name Hildegard K replaced the name Pikel'ner K, when the name Hildegard was approved for the larger crater in which Hildegard K is… Read More

Sols 1266-1268: Taking Stock of Stockdale

26 February 2016

Today’s plan has a nice mix of science and driving. The rover will start off on Sol 1266 with ChemCam observations of the targets “Ugab”, “Rooibank” and “Stockdale”. We will zap the Rooibank target using two different laser energies to see if that helps us… Read More

Sols 1264-1265: Halfway to Naukluft Plateau

24 February 2016

We had a successful ~70 meter drive toward the Naukluft plateau, and the drive in today’s plan should put us about halfway to the base of the plateau. The Sol 1264 plan starts with some targeted science: first we have a Mastcam mosaic of the scarp that forms the edge of the plateau, and… Read More

Sols 1262-1263: Driving Toward Naukluft Plateau

22 February 2016

We’re gearing up for a nice long drive toward the “Naukluft Plateau” in today’s plan! The sol 1262 plan starts off with ChemCam of the bedrock targets “Gemsboktal” and “Ghaub”, with Mastcam documentation. Mastcam will also take a picture of the… Read More

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

Name Approved for Crater on Mars: Prao

19 February 2016

The IAU Working Group for Planetary System Nomenclature has approved the name Prao for a small crater on Mars. For more information, see the map for MC-21 in the Gazetteer of Planetary Nomenclature.

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

Name Approved for Feature on Mars: Pyrrhae Fossae

10 February 2016

The IAU Working Group for Planetary System Nomenclature has approved the name Pyrrhae Fossae for a feature on Mars. For more information, see the MC-19 and MC-26 maps in the Gazetteer of Planetary Nomenclature.