When we looked at the latest data from MSL
this morning, we noticed that the MAHLI
and ChemCam RMI images
of the Quela dump pile were unexpectedly offset from the center of the pile. After looking at more of the recent images, it became clear that the dump pile had been moved by winds! So we put together plans to repeat the ChemCam
passive observation and APXS
integration on the dump pile at its new position, but ultimately were not able to fit the ChemCam
passive into the plan due to power limitations. We didn’t want to put off the strategically-planned cross-contamination experiment, which requires significant power. Hopefully the wind won’t blow away the dump pile before APXS
can measure its chemical composition!
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.