20 July 2015

Sols 1048-1050: Test drill and drive

Posted by Ryan Anderson


The Sol 1046 wheel imaging completed nominally, and the rover is a little over 1 meter from its previous location.  So the outcrop to the right of the vehicle is still close enough for ChemCam LIBS measurements, and I helped select new targets again today.  The Sol 1048 plan includes ChemCam and Mastcam observations of “Pinto,” “Palomino,” and “Burnt Point” plus a Navcam search for clouds toward the north.  Then the arm will be deployed for drill testing and CHIMRA maintenance activities in preparation for the next drill activity.  We are interested in sampling the bright rocks east of the rover, but the Elk and Lamoose targets are not suitable for drilling, so on Sol 1049 we plan to drive toward a nearby bright outcrop of what looks like the same material.  We’re hoping that we will be able to sample that material with the drill.  Early on the morning of Sol 1050, Mastcam, Navcam, and ChemCam will observe the Sun and sky to measure the amount of dust in the atmosphere, search for clouds, and look for changes in atmospheric chemistry.  Another full weekend plan!

by Ken Herkenhoff

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.