Sol 1309: Can't Catch a Break

11 April 2016

Navcam view of the northern rim of Gale crater.

We just can’t catch a break lately! Curiosity is healthy but unfortunately the plan for the weekend was not transmitted to Mars due to a Deep Space Network outage. That means that the contact science that was planned for the weekend is lost, but the team decided that it was not important enough for us to delay driving. Today’s plan attempts to at least recover the remote sensing observations before we move on.

The Sol 1309 plan starts off with a continuation of the previous mosaic of the target “Rasthof” plus a multispectral observation of the target “Ruacana”. ChemCam then has a long distance RMI mosaic of some mesas to the west of the Peace Vallis fan, followed by an analysis of some dark cap rock at the target “Kapako”. Mastcam will document Kapako and finish up with a small mosaic of some interesting textures in a nearby part of the outcrop. After that, we have a short drive followed by standard post-drive imaging. In the afternoon, Mastcam and Navcam have several atmospheric observations and MARDI has an image of the terrain beneath the rover. Finally, in the early morning of Sol 1310 Mastcam has a mosaic of Mt. Sharp.

by Ryan Anderson

-Ryan is a planetary scientist at the USGS Astrogeology Science Center and a member of the ChemCam team on MSL.

Dates of planned rover activities described in these reports are subject to change due to a variety of factors related to the martian environment, communication relays and rover status