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19 November 2017

Sols 1879-1881: Stay frosty!

We’re only a few sols from southern winter solstice in Gale Crater on Mars, which means it’s pretty much the coldest time of year and the best time for Curiosity to try to see water frost on the surface.

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5 January 2017

Sol 1571: Leaving Old Soaker

The arm will be unstowed to allow Navcam and Left Mastcam to take pictures of the area in front of the rover to aid planning for this weekend.

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4 January 2017

Sol 1570: Finishing up at Old Soaker

If all of this goes well, we will be ready to drive away from Old Soaker on Sol 1571.

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5 April 2013

A last hurrah of flowing water on Mars

This is not so much a review of a recent paper as a review of a significant paper. “An intense terminal epoch of widespread fluvial activity on early Mars:1. Valley network incision and associated deposits” by Alan Howard, Jeff Moore, and Ross Irwin is the first of a pair of papers published in 2005 that make the case that instead of a gradual transition from warm and wet to cold …

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30 October 2012

Hurricane Sandy’s Rainfall in Perspective

With all the breathless reporting about how hurricane Sandy (a.k.a. Frankenstorm) is such a massive weather event, I was curious what the quantity of rainfall from Sandy looks like in comparison to, say, the amount of water in the martian atmosphere.

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2 August 2012

Curiosity is Going Home

This morning when I was walking the dog, I paused to appreciate the sight of the early sunlight shining through the dew-drenched grass and sparkling on the dripping ponderosa pine branches. It was a nice peaceful moment, and it made me think of what a different world we’re sending Curiosity to. The amount of liquid water that I saw glimmering on the grass this morning probably hasn’t been seen anywhere …

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