I served as SOWG chair again today, planning Sol 11 of the MSL mission. All is going well, but slowly--we continue to confirm that instruments are working and to get ready for more ambitious activities. Today's plan was so full of stuff that we have to do to realize the full potential of MSL that… Read More
After a nice vacation in Flagstaff, I returned to JPL in time for Sol 10 planning. I was scheduled this time as Science Operations Working Group (SOWG) Chair, with responsibility for leading the discussion of data received the previous sol and deciding what to do the next sol. This job is part of… Read More
Another good day on Mars: MSL's remote sensing mast was successfully deployed, and a Navcam panorama acquired. Not all of the images have been sent to Earth yet, but those that have been received are very useful for planning future observations. In addition, more full-resolution descent… Read More
I'm working second shift today; my tactical operations role is Science Uplink Representative. As the title implies, my responsibility is to represent the science team during the uplink planning process (preparing command sequences to be transmitted to the spacecraft). The early part… Read More
Today I'm working as Science Uplink Representative again, planning Sol 2 activities. We now know exactly where MSL is, thanks to more good work by the MRO HiRISE team: They acquired a new image of the landing area that shows not only the rover, but its heat shield, parachute, and descent stage,… Read More
All three of the USGS scientists involved in MSL are in a large conference room in JPL building 321, along with over 400 other science team members. The tension in the room is rising as MSL approaches Mars. Mars Odyssey is in position and sending a good signal, ready to relay data from MSL during… Read More
Dr. Justin Hagerty, a research geologist with the U.S. Geological Survey, was named one of President Obama's recipients of the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, the highest honor bestowed by the United States government on science and engineering professionals in the… Read More
The USGS Astrogeology Science Center helped complete the first geologic map of Jupiter's moon, Io. For more information see the USGS newsroom article.