18 June 2016

Sols 1375-1377: Another busy weekend

Posted by Ryan Anderson

The Sol 1373 drive completed successfully, moving the rover over 31 meters toward the south.  There’s lots of bedrock exposed around the vehicle, but no flat patches large enough to brush in the arm workspace.

So MAHLI will take images of an unbrushed target called “Andara” before the APXS is placed on it for an overnight integration.  Before these arm activities on Sol 1375, ChemCam and the Right Mastcam will observe Andara and other bedrock targets “Okoloti,” “Kalkfeld,” and “Khorixas.”  Mastcam will then acquire a stereo mosaic of a nice outcrop toward the southwest dubbed “Baynes Mountains” and a left-eye mosaic of another outcrop northwest of the rover.  The CheMin team requested another portion of the Oudam drill sample, which will be delivered late that afternoon.  After dark, MAHLI will image the CheMin inlet using its LEDs for illumination.

Late in the morning of Sol 1376, APXS will integrate again on Andara to compare the quality of data acquired at different temperatures.  Then the arm will be stowed for a long (about 55 meters) drive, which will be followed by the usual post-drive imaging and another ChemCam AEGIS (autonomously-targeted) observation.

On Sol 1377, the Left Mastcam will acquire a mosaic of the rover deck, to serve as a baseline for comparison with future images taken after passing the sand dunes along the path ahead.  Sand blown across the rover might remove some of the dust on the rover deck.  Finally, CheMin will analyze the new Oudam sample portion overnight.  It should be another busy weekend for MSL!

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.