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13 March 2017
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.
10 March 2017
Curiosity drove about 29 meters toward the south on Sol 1632, and is in a good position for weekend activities.
8 March 2017
The Curiosity rover drove a little over 40 meters on Sol 1630, to a place with bedrock blocks surrounded by dark sand.
7 March 2017
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.
3 March 2017
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.
1 March 2017
Curiosity is still at the second stop of the Bagnold Dune campaign, running a few more MAHLI diagnostics and focusing on targeted remote sensing.
15 February 2017
Curiosity drove almost 27 meters on Sol 1610 to a location with several potential targets, so the planning team spent some time discussing priorities.
14 February 2017
Curiosity’s activities planned for Sol 1609 went well, and MAHLI focus data indicate that high-resolution images of Perry were successfully acquired. So we’re ready to drive away from Ireson Hill after some more remote sensing of the rocks in front of the rover.
13 February 2017
Curiosity drove a little over 9 meters on Sol 1608, to get the vehicle closer to Ireson Hill and the dark blocks that have rolled down from the top of the hill.
12 February 2017
Curiosity’s drive on Sol 1605 was successful, putting us in a good position for weekend science on the northeast side of Ireson Hill. The sol 1606 plan starts off with ChemCam observations of “Quimby,” which appears to be a piece of cap rock that has tumbled down from the top of the hill, and a bedrock target “Quoddy.”
10 February 2017
On Sol 1604 we wrapped up at the first stop of this second phase of the Bagnold Dune campaign. The plan started off, as usual for the dune campaign, with a pair of Mastcam images that were then repeated throughout the day to look for changes.
7 February 2017
The weekend plan for Curiosity went well and today we begin the second half of the campaign to study the “Bagnold Dunes.” The Sol 1602 plan starts off with two Mastcam mosaics of the dunes which will be repeated several times later in the sol to watch for changes.
1 February 2017
The drive on Sol 1598 went well, and Curiosity drove ~21 m to the southwest, providing a great view of “Ireson Hill,” seen in the above Navcam image. Today’s two-sol plan looks pretty similar to the last.
30 January 2017
We’re still a few more drives away from the dunes, but looking forward to the next campaign.
29 January 2017
Looks like the team had some fun using the less desirable names for rock targets in today’s plan! These are all named after rock formations and geologic features from Bar Harbor, Maine. Curiosity drove another 8 meters on Sol 1591, and we’ll continue to drive in the weekend plan. The three-sol plan starts with a few data management activities for Mastcam and MAHLI, and a recovery sequence to restart ChemCam …
27 January 2017
Right now it’s incredibly important for scientists to hammer home why science is essential, important and needs to be practiced rigorously, transparently and without censorship. It’s clear that we can no longer limit ourselves to broader impact statements in our next grant applications. I thought I’d do my part by starting a new blog series and highlighting United States geoscientists and their work in action.
25 January 2017
We are approaching the Bagnold Dunes, so in order to save time and allow more room for science activities at the dunes, today’s plan does not include a drive.
24 January 2017
Over the weekend the rover drove ~28 meters, and the plan for Sol 1589 continues our slow ascent of Mt. Sharp. ChemCam is still marked “sick” while we sort out the error that occurred last week, so the Sol 1589 science block is heavy on Mastcam.
20 January 2017
Later in the afternoon, Mastcam will measure the amount of dust in the atmosphere and Navcam will search again for dust devils. After the usual MARDI twilight image is taken, ChemCam will perform some calibration activities at various temperatures.