Astrogeology Science Center

Sol 2116: Driving back to Sgurr of Eigg

19 July 2018

The Sol 2115 wheel imaging went well, and we received the images needed to plan a drive back to "Sgurr of Eigg," near the Sol 1999 rover position.  The >50-meter drive dominates the Sol 2116 plan, but leaves time for continued atmospheric and other scientific observations.  Before… Read More

Sol 2115: New method of wheel imaging

18 July 2018

The priorities for Sol 2115 are to image the rover's wheels and acquire the images needed to plan a drive back to the Sol 1999 location, where we might start another drilling campaign.  The MAHLI images of the wheels taken on Sol 2114 with the dust cover closed show that there is enough… Read More

Good Times at the Lunar Legacy Celebration Begin July 20

17 July 2018

Individuals of the Astrogeology Team will be at the Lunar Legacy Celebration, July 20, at the Orpheum Theatre in Flagstaff, Arizona. Not only will you not want to miss this fun family-friendly event, it is totally free. The city will be celebrating Flagstaff’s scientific role in the… Read More

Beloved JPL Nominated for an Emmy: Sweet!

16 July 2018

Will NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) be granted an Emmy for Outstanding Original Interactive Program for its coverage of the Cassini mission? Alongside every other person sitting on pins and needles, individual curiosity can’t be satisfied until later this year, on 15 September, at the… Read More

Sol 2113: Hard as a rock

16 July 2018

Unfortunately, we found out this morning that the “Voyageurs” drill target was a much harder rock than expected.  While our drill plan executed perfectly, our bit stopped short of the full depth we need for sampling.  The engineers are still evaluating the data to better… Read More

Sols 2110-2112: Let the drill fest begin!

13 July 2018

Drilling on another planet is no easy feat, and each time we have the opportunity to do so on Mars feels pretty special.  The focus of the weekend three-sol plan is to drill the target “Voyageurs,” which is part of an outcrop that shows a high hematite signature in orbital… Read More

Happy July 4th and 1997 throwback!

3 July 2018

Twenty-one years ago Mars Pathfinder landed the Carl Sagan Memorial Station along with a wheeled robotic rover named Sojourner in Ares Vallis, on Mars, on July fourth of 1997. The mission was launched on December 4, 1996 from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida. Transmissions ceased from… Read More

Science Fact or Fiction: does Kilauea skylight show a place of eternal unrest?

28 June 2018

Social media is gobbling up a photograph of a West Kamokuna lava skylight captured back in 1996 by Astrogeology Science Center Director and volcanologist, Dr. Laszlo Kestay. It isn’t just any skylight photo. Some have esteemed it the most interesting photo they have ever observed and even… Read More

Sols 2095-2096: Over the crest

27 June 2018

After a steep drive Sol 2094, Curiosity is back over the crest of Vera Rubin Ridge and enjoying the view of flatter terrain ahead.  I was the SOWG Chair on this late slide sol, which means that we started planning 3.5 hours later than usual. Everything was going smoothly and we were… Read More

Sols 2093-2094: Feeling powerful

25 June 2018

Today’s 2-sol plan kicked off with the good news that our power state exceeded predictions, so we were able to add in some extra science activities.  The first sol starts with several remote sensing activities to continue to monitor the ongoing dust storm.  Then the team… Read More