Astrogeology Science Center

Sol 1350: Data processing delay

23 May 2016

I'm SOWG Chair again today, and started browsing the latest data from MSL early this morning.  To my dismay, the post-drive images that we expected to receive in time for planning today were not available!  It turned out that the data were received on Earth, but the Mars Reconnaissance… Read More

Sols 1348-1349: A smoother route

20 May 2016

Our drive on Sol 1346 was successful and brought us to a location with a view of the rugged ridges of the area we’ve been calling “Fracture Town”. In fact, from our current location, we decided that those ridges may be a bit too rough for comfort, so we are planning a slight… Read More

Sols 1346-1347: Onward to Fracture Town

18 May 2016

We are coming up on the edge of Naukluft plateau (again!). The plan for Sol 1346 starts off with ChemCam observations of the targets “Etusis” and “Etiro”, to continue measuring the variations in silica abundance around large fractures. Mastcam has a context image of these… Read More

Sols 1344-1345: Touch and Go

16 May 2016

The drive planned last weekend completed successfully, moving MSL less than 6 meters into position for contact science on the rocks broken by the rover wheels.  Planning is restricted this week, so we are planning 2 sols' worth of activities.  The first sol (1344) includes a "touch… Read More

Sols 1341-1343: A change of plans

13 May 2016

The MSL team was originally planning a long drive this weekend, but there was enough interest in the fresh rock surfaces exposed near the rover that we decided to investigate them instead.  Before we could decide whether to "bump" to the rocks that were broken when the rover drove over… Read More

Sols 1339-1340: Two Mars Years!

11 May 2016

Happy birthday, Curiosity! As of today, the rover has been on the surface of Mars for two Mars years (almost four Earth years)! To celebrate, we have a new press release discussing our ongoing environmental measurements. These sorts of systematic measurements become more useful the longer the rover… Read More

Sols 1337-1338: Curiosity’s two-day arm challenge, followed by a selfie

9 May 2016

Today’s two-sol plan is going to be quite an arm workout for Curiosity.  Over the weekend, Curiosity transferred and sieved the “Okoruso” drill sample, and analyzed it with CheMin.  That means that today’s plan is focused on arm activities and imaging the drill… Read More

Sols 1334-1336: Successful drilling at Okoruso

6 May 2016

Meet the latest drill hole on Mars: “Okoruso,” created on Sol 1332, seen in the above MAHLI image.  Drilling activities went well on Sol 1332, so the weekend plan is focused on sieving the sample and dropping it off to CheMin for analysis.  The plan starts with a short science… Read More

First Topographic Map of Mercury

6 May 2016

This high-resolution map provides the first comprehensive view of Mercury’s entire surface, illustrating the planet’s craters, volcanoes and tectonic landforms. This product brings together observations and scientific findings from NASA’s MErcury Surface, Space ENvironment,… Read More

Sols 1332-1333: Drilling at Okoruso

4 May 2016

Contact science activities on Sol 1330 went well, and we’re ready to drill at “Okoruso.”  As seen in the above MAHLI image, this target looks like pretty typical Stimson bedrock, so it will be helpful to compare to the altered rock that we sampled at Lubango. Today’s… Read More