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23 March 2017

Sol 1645: Searching for dust devils

An excellent example of two different instruments working together to improve our understanding of the meteorology of Gale Crater and dust lifting processes on Mars as Curiosity traverses up Mount Sharp.

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21 March 2017

Sol 1640-1642: Better Late than Never!

The weekend plan started with some Navcam atmospheric observations, followed by ChemCam on the bedrock target “Big Moose Mountain.”

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Sol 1644: Staying put

The Sol 1644 plan for Curiosity focuses on arm activities, because the volume of data expected to be relayed via the MRO and Mars Odyssey orbiters in time for planning tomorrow is too small to allow both a drive and drill diagnostic tests.  So the tactical science team took advantage of the opportunity for contact science by planning APXS and MAHLI observations of bedrock targets named “The Hop” and “The Horns.”  …

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20 March 2017

Sol 1643: First half of long-baseline stereo

Curiosity drove about 28 meters toward the south on Sol 1642 and again is in an area with Murray Formation bedrock blocks surrounded by dark sand.

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16 March 2017

Sol 1639: Onward to Ogunquit Beach

Curiosity has been at Stop 3 of the dune campaign (now known as “Southern Cove”) for a couple of sols, so in today’s plan it’s time to move on.

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15 March 2017

Sol 1638: Busy Day for MAHLI

Today we are continuing our investigation of Stop #3 of the Bagnold Dune campaign. We start off with some MAHLI images of the APXS targets “Ripogenus” and “Spragueville” from yesterday.

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14 March 2017

Sol 1637: Stop 3

Yesterday’s short drive was successful, so we started today with the rover parked at stop #3 of the dune campaign and the rover’s arm up in the “ready out” position.

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13 March 2017

Sol 1636: Another Early Morning

Thankfully I wasn’t actually on duty today, because with daylight savings time Arizona is now on West-coast time, and planning started at 6:30am! In any case, the weekend plan was successful, and put us close to the third stop of the current campaign to study the Bagnold Dunes.

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10 March 2017

Sols 1634-1635: Back to nominal MAHLI planning

Curiosity drove about 29 meters toward the south on Sol 1632, and is in a good position for weekend activities.

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8 March 2017

Sols 1632-1633: Contact science on "Spring Point"

The Curiosity rover drove a little over 40 meters on Sol 1630, to a place with bedrock blocks surrounded by dark sand.

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7 March 2017

Sols 1630-1631: Early Morning Planning

We had an early-morning (6 AM on the west coast!) start to Curiosity planning today, which was a bit painful but with the help of lots of caffeine we put together another plan full of good science! The exciting news from the weekend plan is that the MAHLI dust cover closed as planned, so we’re back in business with MAHLI.

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3 March 2017

Sols 1627-1629: Driving again

Good news: the MAHLI cover was successfully opened and the instrument is marked healthy again. That means it’s time to close the cover, and if that’s successful, drive away toward the next stop in the Bagnold Dunes Campaign.

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1 March 2017

Sols 1625-1626: Change detection and additional remote sensing

Curiosity is still at the second stop of the Bagnold Dune campaign, running a few more MAHLI diagnostics and focusing on targeted remote sensing.

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27 February 2017

Sols 1623-1624: MAHLI diagnostics and remote sensing

Today’s two-sol plan is devoted to MAHLI diagnostics and remote sensing. It’s another late slide sol, so planning started three and half hours later than usual. The plan kicks off with arm activities to better understand the fault that MAHLI experienced last week. Then ChemCam will investigate “Dunn Brook,” a target that is just above “Chase Brook” from the weekend plan, and is shown in the above Mastcam image.

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24 February 2017

Sol 1619: Wrapping up dune stop #2

We are wrapping up our observations at stop #2 of the second Bagnold dunes campaign. In the Sol 1619 plan, we start off with Navcam and Mastcam atmospheric observations, followed by a ChemCam observation of the sandy target “Leighton.” Mastcam will then document Leighton and the autonomously identified ChemCam target from the post-drive science block on Sol 1617.

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Sols 1620-1622: A weekend full of remote sensing

On Sol 1619, MAHLI experienced a fault and did not finish its planned imaging, so unfortunately the subsequent arm and mobility activities did not execute. That means that the weekend plan is devoted to MAHLI recovery activities and a lot of remote sensing. I was the GSTL today, and although it was a challenging start to the day, we were able to put together a very full plan.

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22 February 2017

Sol 1618: A second stop at the dunes

The drive on Sol 1617 went well, and Curiosity drove 20 m to the south, which put us in a good position for another stop at the Bagnold Dunes. This site was selected to enable comparison of the leading and trailing edges of the dunes. Today’s plan includes ChemCam observations of disturbed and undisturbed soil, at targets named “Tomhegan” and “Macworth.”

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17 February 2017

Sols 1614-1616: Delayed planning

The Sol 1612 drive went well, and there is a nice bedrock block in the arm workspace. We received a bit more data than expected before planning started, but not enough to finalize drive plans and contact science targets. As expected, we received more data during planning, including color images of the arm workspace that were very useful in selecting contact science targets. The late arrival of the necessary data …

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16 February 2017

Sols 1612-1613: Planning challenges

After a 23-meter drive on Sol 1611, MSL again ended up in an area with many bedrock blocks partly covered by dark sand.

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15 February 2017

Sol 1611: Patch Mountain

Curiosity drove almost 27 meters on Sol 1610 to a location with several potential targets, so the planning team spent some time discussing priorities.

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