Astrogeology Science Center

Sol 1543: Motor controller fault

7 December 2016

The Sol 1542 drill diagnostics did not complete as intended, and as a consequence, neither did some of the later science activities.  Therefore, those tests and activities from Sol 1542 will be planned again on Sol 1543.  But first, ChemCam will shoot its laser at a target near… Read More

Sol 1542: More drill testing

6 December 2016

While investigation of the drill anomaly continues, more diagnostic tests will be performed on Sol 1542.  Again, no mobility or other arm activities will be planned, so the science team added only remote sensing observations.  ChemCam will observe Hunters Beach again to further… Read More

Sol 1541: Change detection

5 December 2016

The weekend plan returned some great remote sensing data, including the above Mastcam image of "Ireson Hill" to investigate the stratigraphy exposed in a distant butte. While we work on assessing the drill fault, the team decided to devote today’s plan to remote sensing and change… Read More

Sols 1538-1540: Targeted Remote Sensing

2 December 2016

The RPs are going to take a little more time to diagnose the drill fault before we drive or use the arm again, so today’s plan is focused on targeted remote sensing.  We’re still at the “Precipice” site, assessing the composition and sedimentary structures in the Murray… Read More

Sol 1537: Drill fault

1 December 2016

Unfortunately, the much-anticipated rotary-only drilling experiment did not even start due to a drill fault that is currently being investigated.  This type of drill fault appears to be unrelated to the previous short circuits during percussion, but more study is needed.  So the… Read More

Sol 1536: Drilling "Precipice"

30 November 2016

The cross-contamination experiment and cleaning of CHIMRA went well, so we are ready to drill into the Precipice target!  Past drilling activities have made use of both rotation and percussion, but percussion has caused intermittent short circuits occasionally since Sol 911, so on Sol… Read More

Name Approved for Feature on Mars: Ubud

29 November 2016

The IAU Working Group for Planetary System Nomenclature has approved the name Ubud for a crater on Mars. For more information, see the map of MC-19 in the Gazetteer of Planetary Nomenclature.

Sol 1535: Cross-contamination experiment

29 November 2016

The current drill campaign continues to go smoothly, and the Sol 1535 plan is dominated by an experiment to see if any Sebina sample material is left inside the drill bit chamber from the previous drilling.  This is motivated by the fact that we only used vibration to transfer that sample… Read More

Sol 1534: Preparing to drill

28 November 2016

Curiosity had a productive Thanksgiving weekend and now we are getting ready to drill at “Precipice.”  Sol 1534 begins with MAHLI imaging of the post-sieve dump pile from the previous drill sample (“Sebina”).  Then we have a short science block to acquire a ChemCam… Read More

Names Approved for Bright Spots on Ceres

26 November 2016

The IAU Working Group for Planetary System Nomenclature has approved the names Cerealia Facula and Vinalia Faculae for bright spots on Ceres. For more information, see the map of Ceres in the Gazetteer of Planetary Nomenclature.