23 March 2016

Sol 1291: Another curveball

Posted by Ryan Anderson

Sol 1289 Navcam

Mars is certainly keeping us on our toes this week, and reminding us how challenging it can be to do remote operations on another planet.  We use two satellites in orbit around Mars to relay data: Mars Odyssey (ODY) and the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO).  On Sol 1290, the ODY pass relayed data that showed the rover status was healthy.  However, the MRO pass was not received due to an issue with the Deep Space Network (DSN), and that was the pass that contained data about how the drive went.  So today turned into an untargeted remote sensing day, while we wait for updated information.  It was a good opportunity to catch up on some ChemCam calibration activities, deck monitoring, and environmental observations.  The MRO data will be retransmitted, and hopefully we’ll be back on the road tomorrow!

By Lauren Edgar

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.