3 February 2016
Today was the last day for science activities at Namib Dune, as we’re planning to drive away on Sol 1243. It’s fun looking at the disturbed sand in the workspace, and realizing how much we’ve done here (is it just me, or does it look like a big sandbox full of scoops, dumps and wheel scuffs?). While it might look like Curiosity has just been playing in the sand, we’ve managed to accomplish a lot of really great science here.
Today’s plan includes additional CHIMRA diagnostics, and a number of MAHLI and APXS observations of the dump piles. It’s impressive how close we’re able to get MAHLI to the sand, which should enable some really high-resolution studies of the grain properties. The plan also includes several Mastcam and ChemCam RMI observations of the ripples to look for changes. I’ll be on duty tomorrow, so I’m looking forward to driving off in search of the next drill target!
By Lauren Edgar
–Lauren is a Research Geologist at the USGS Astrogeology Science Center and a member of 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.