4 June 2017
Curiosity left no stone unturned, unshot or unbrushed as she wrapped up observations at the stand of gray-toned rocks she arrived at on Sol 1712. We added to yesterday’s rich observations of gray-toned rocks by brushing a nodule-rich target, ‘Timber Point,’ to give MAHLI and APXS as clear a look as possible of the target’s texture and chemistry. We added to yesterday’s rich observations of gray-toned rocks by brushing a nodule-rich target, ‘Timber Point,’ to give MAHLI and APXS as clear a look as possible of the target’s texture and chemistry. Scattered amongst the gray-toned rocks were patches of Murray formation rocks, and the team thought it best not to neglect our old friend. MAHLI images and APXS data from the Murray target ‘Old Mill Brook’ will complement all the data we have collected from the gray-toned rocks. Both Timber Point and Old Mill Brook were also accessible to ChemCam, which will shoot both these targets before MAHLI has a look at them. This gives MAHLI a unique chance to look at the laser-disturbed material within each ChemCam spot, which can reveal more about the grain structure of the target than an observation of an undisturbed surface. ChemCam also analyzed a second Murray target, ‘Goose Eye Mountain,’ to expand our dataset on this material, and a beautifully-layered, gray-toned target called ‘Spectacle Island.’ We accomplished most of our Mastcam imaging of the outcrops around us yesterday, but additional Mastcam imaging of Spectacle Island was just too good to pass up.
Curiosity will also acquire a variety of images and movies of the skies. Taken in the early morning and later in the afternoon, they will help us understand the dynamics of the atmosphere over the course of the Martian day. SAM will prep for its next atmosphere measurement, as well.
After all this activity, Curiosity will drive away from our gray rock playground, for new discoveries uphill!
Written by Michelle Minitti, Planetary Geologist at Framework