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17 July 2017
July 13 marked the last chance for us to reliably command Curiosity before she, and Mars, disappear behind the Sun for about three weeks.
16 July 2017
Planetary scientists take their vacations when the planets align. In our case it is because communications with Mars are blacked out when the red planet goes behind the sun. It is called a solar conjunction. Afterwards, Mars will re-appear in our terrestrial skies early in the morning, just before sunrise. As the Earth chases the Red Planet, Mars will rise earlier until at opposition, when the Earth passes Mars a …
12 July 2017
Today on Mars we planned a typical ‘drive sol’ that involved a bit of pre-drive science followed by a drive and some post-drive untargeted observations.
10 July 2017
Following a jam-packed weekend of contact and remote science on some beautiful sand deposits, the GEO group opted for mostly remote observations in today’s plan.
8 July 2017
Curiosity has intentionally scuffed a nearby sand ripple, which has gifted the team with an exceptional view of the interior of these small sand deposits.
6 July 2017
A high level of charge in Curiosity’s batteries after the long holiday weekend allowed us to prepare a bounty of science observations.
29 June 2017
I was the Surface Properties Scientist, or SPS, on staff again today. After completing a successful drive, Curiosity arrived at a nice workspace to carry out the weekend plan.
27 June 2017
Last evening (June 27) between 8pm and 9pm PDT, Curiosity drove approximately 34 meters to the east to position herself just north of a large field of ripples on her way closer to ascending the iron oxide-bearing Vera Rubin Ridge. As Curiosity progresses towards the east, scientists back on Earth continue to look for opportunities to both gaze ahead towards interesting locations on the ridge itself, in addition to looking at the local rocks and sediment surrounding the rover.
This past weekend, Curiosity continued to journey east along the contact between the lower portion of Vera Rubin Ridge and the Murray formation with a drive that was a little over 20 m long.
24 June 2017
Curiosity has presented us with another beautiful workspace following a 16.6 meter drive. The majority of this week’s activities were focused on imaging Vera Rubin Ridge to observe its stratigraphic and structural relationship to the underlying Murray formation.
20 June 2017
Curiosity continues to drive to the east-northeast around two small patches of dunes that are positioned just north of Vera Rubin Ridge. Once beyond this easternmost dune patch, the plan is for her to turn to the southeast and towards the location identified as the safest place for Curiosity to ascend the ridge.
18 June 2017
As this is my first time contributing to the Curiosity rover blog, I’d like to quickly introduce myself to you all. I’m Mark, an MSL Participating Scientist and a faculty member at Northern Arizona University, trained in geochemistry, spectroscopy, and remote sensing. I’m excited to help walk you all through the daily endeavors of this wonderful rover and mission!
16 June 2017
The drive on Sol 1728 was successful, and our weekend plan will be chock-full of activities. On the first sol, we will do some contact science on the rather colorful workspace that is currently in front of the Curiosity rover.
14 June 2017
After a busy day of contact science yesterday, today’s Curiosity rover plan was dedicated towards remote science and driving. As Mastcam PUL-1 today, I was fairly busy helping put together a suite of Mastcam images for Curiosity to take.
25 May 2017
After Curiosity’s 14.6 m drive, the GEO group decided against arm activities due to a lack of compelling targets and in deference to making the next drive longer. So GEO science activities relied on Mastcam and ChemCam. On Sol 1707, ChemCam will capture a raster of the ‘White Cap Mountain’ bedrock target (the white bedrock left of center in the bottom quarter of the above Navcam image), as well as a …
21 May 2017
The rover planners parked us in front of the one slab of outcrop – an island among ripples of sand – we could safely drive to from our Sol 1700 position, setting us up to continue our exploration of the Murray formation.
18 May 2017
Curiosity continues towards Vera Rubin Ridge with a 48 m drive. GEO decided for the touch-and-go option (instead of lengthening the drive like on Sol 1684) using APXS and MAHLI on “Ripple Pond,” a typical member of the Murray formation.
15 May 2017
The road to Vera Rubin Ridge, a feature believed to be enriched in the mineral hematite, is getting steeper, so we are stopping frequently to study the composition of the bedrock beneath our wheels.
14 May 2017
Curiosity continued her detailed investigation of the interesting suite of outcrops we have been picking our way across during the last week. As we climb up Mount Sharp, recently over slopes of 4-6 degrees, we have seen more varied outcrop structures and chemistries than the rest of the Murray formation, and such changes catch the collective eye of the team.