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Curiosity Mars Rover: Onward to Clay-bearing Unit

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Image good: A selfie taken by NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover on Sol 2291 (January 15) on the “Rock Corridor” drill website, positioned on Vera Rubin Ridge.
This was Curiosity’s 19th drill website. The drill gap is seen to the rover’s lower-left.
Credit score: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS


NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover has simply begun Sol 2304 duties, with Pink Planet scientists trying ahead to the clay-bearing unit that the robotic is about to discover.

Curiosity Entrance Hazcam Left A photograph taken on Sol 2302, January 27, 2019.
Credit score: NASA/JPL-Caltech

Ryan Anderson, a planetary geologist on the USGS in Flagstaff, Arizona studies that the final weekend plan began off on Sol 2301 with some Mastcam atmospheric observations, adopted by Chemistry and Digital camera (ChemCam) evaluation of “Loch Ness” and “Loch Skeen,” examples of brown and grey bedrock.

“ChemCam additionally had a long-distance picture mosaic of an fascinating outcrop within the clay-bearing unit. As soon as the distant sensing was executed, it was time for some contact science,” Anderson provides.

Curiosity Mastcam Proper picture taken on Sol 2301, January 26, 2019.
Credit score: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS

Brush off

The robotic’s Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) collected some photos of Loch Ness earlier than and after it was brushed, in addition to the goal “Puddledub.”

The Alpha Particle X-Ray Spectrometer (APXS) made a fast evaluation of Puddledub and an in a single day evaluation of Loch Ness.

“On Sol 2302, we began off with a Navcam atmospheric commentary, adopted by Mastcam multispectral observations of Loch Ness and Loch Skeen. Mastcam additionally had a big stereo mosaic surveying the clay-bearing unit that we’ll quickly be exploring,” Anderson explains.

Curiosity Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) picture produced on Sol 2301, January 26, 2019.
Credit score: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS

Looming massive

The rover then drove for about 105 ft (32 meters) and picked up some post-drive imaging together with a routine Mastcam “clast survey” to doc adjustments within the rocks and soils alongside its traverse, Anderson provides, “in addition to some further Navcam photos to assist with imaging the pediment that’s looming massive simply past the clay-bearing unit.

This was adopted by some Mastcam atmospheric observations and a Mars Descent Imager (MARDI) picture of the bottom beneath the rover.

Credit score: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Univ. of Arizona

Anderson concludes that Sol 2303 rover work was devoted to atmospheric observations, with the standard Mastcam “tau” photos plus a number of Navcam motion pictures. “A few of these have been pointed on the sky to observe for clouds, whereas others have been identified throughout the crater flooring to observe for mud devils.”

On the path 

In the meantime, a newly issued Curiosity traverse map by means of Sol 2302  exhibits the route pushed Curiosity by means of the 2302 Martian day, or sol, of the rover’s mission on Mars (January 28, 2019).

Numbering of the dots alongside the road point out the sol variety of every drive. North is up. The dimensions bar is 1 kilometer (~zero.62 mile).

From Sol 2300 to Sol 2302, Curiosity had pushed a straight line distance of about 86.26 ft (26.29 meters), bringing the rover’s complete odometry for the mission to 12.46 miles (20.05 kilometers).

The bottom picture from the map is from the Excessive Decision Imaging Science Experiment Digital camera (HiRISE) in NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter.


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