13 April 2015
by Ryan Anderson
Our sol 952 drive went well, and we’re very close to crossing over into a new “quad” of the map that was made before landing (meaning we will get a whole new bunch of target names to choose from!). On Saturday the team planned for a lengthy ChemCam focus test on sol 953, where we collect images of the target “Eaton Canyon” at different times of day to check the influence of temperature. We also planned a nice big 20×2 Mastcam mosaic of “Mount Saint Mary”. On sol 954, we delivered some of the “Telegraph Peak” drill sample that we have been carrying with us to the SAM instrument, and dumped the rest out on the ground to be analyzed by APXS overnight.
Today we are planning for sol 955. We have Mastcam and a ChemCam RMI of the “Eaton Canyon” target again, as well as Mastcam and passive ChemCam of the dump pile. Mastcam also has a small mosaic in the expected drive direction and a larger 10×1 mosaic of “Tucki Mountain.” Then, shortly after sunrise on sol 956 Navcam will be taking an atmospheric measurement movie and Mastcam will measure the amount of dust in the atmosphere by looking at the sun.
-Ryan is a planetary scientist at the USGS Astrogeology Science Center and a member of the ChemCam team on MSL.
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.