3 February 2016

Sol 1243: Getting ready to leave Namib Dune

Posted by Ryan

Sol 1242 Navcam of contact science

Sol 1242 MAHLI close-up of sand

The contact science activities on Sol 1242 were successful, which completed our investigation at the Namib Dune sampling location.  I love the above Navcam image, which shows just how close we were able to get MAHLI to the dump piles, followed by the really high-resolution MAHLI image!  Now it’s time to leave Namib Dune and head off in search of the next drill location.

I was the GSTL today, and it was a pretty straightforward day.  Due to additional CHIMRA diagnostics, there wasn’t much time for additional science.  The plan includes turning and backing up to allow a DAN active measurement over the dune sampling location.  In the geology theme group, we focused our attention on post-drive imaging, to prepare for the possibility of contact science or drilling in an upcoming plan.  In addition to all of the great science on active dunes, it’s exciting to think about the bedrock and where we might drill next!

By Lauren Edgar

–Lauren is a Research Geologist at the USGS Astrogeology Science Center and a member of MSL science team.

Dates of planned rover activities described in these reports are subject to change due to a variety of factors related to the Martian environment, communication relays and rover status.