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13 June 2017
After a successful drive, our parking spot included a nice patch of Murray bedrock to allow us to perform contact science (MAHLI and APXS) in today’s plan. Our target for contact science is ‘Jones Marsh,’ a dark patch of the Murray that you can see just above the rightmost corner of Curiosity’s mast shadow in the Navcam image.
12 June 2017
After great anticipation over the last few weeks, the drive in the current plan will bring us into position for stop 1 of our close look at the northern face of the hematite-bearing Vera Rubin Ridge. Mastcam will take a wide mosaic to begin documenting the sedimentary structure of the ridge.
11 June 2017
On most weekends, Curiosity dedicates part of her efforts to do contact science – deployment of APXS, MAHLI, and sometimes the DRT – because multi-sol weekend plans have more time and power to fit in these more complex activities. Last weekend, however, time and power were dedicated to a more rare, and more complex, activity – analysis of a previously-drilled rock sample by SAM.
8 June 2017
Almost the entirety of the first two sols (1722 and 1723) are dedicated to a SAM analysis of a ‘doggy bagged’ sample from the Quela drill hole collected back in September 2016 (Sol 1464). Several times in the mission we’ve saved samples from our drill locations to analyze later.
7 June 2017
MSL drove 26 meters on Sol 1720, as planned, to a location with blocks of bedrock in the arm workspace. Because the rover climbed another 3 meters in elevation, contact science has top priority for today’s plan, with driving next in priority.
I was the Surface Properties Scientist, or SPS on staff today. The SPS has an interesting job, in that the SPS helps Rover Planners (called RPs) assess the terrain around the rover with safety in mind, first and foremost.
21 May 2017
Curiosity is continuing to make progress towards Vera Rubin Ridge along the Mt Sharp ascent route. We planned two sols today, Sol 1705 and Sol 1706. On our first sol, we will kick off the day with some remote sensing science on the bedrock in front of us, including ChemCam observations of targets ‘Turtle Island’, ‘Stony Brook’, and ‘Dike Peak’. Turtle Island is typical Murray bedrock, Stony Brook has an …
24 February 2017
On Sol 1619, MAHLI experienced a fault and did not finish its planned imaging, so unfortunately the subsequent arm and mobility activities did not execute. That means that the weekend plan is devoted to MAHLI recovery activities and a lot of remote sensing. I was the GSTL today, and although it was a challenging start to the day, we were able to put together a very full plan.
3 October 2016
Curiosity drove 12.5 meters on Sol 1478, to an area with lots of nodules in the bedrock. The tactical planning team decided to exercise the “touch and go” option, so the arm will be deployed for contact science before driving away on Sol 1480.
2 September 2016
Curiosity had a nice ~78 m drive on Sol 1448, which set us up for a lot of great science over the long (4-sol) weekend. Unfortunately a problem with the Deep Space Network caused an entire Odyssey pass to be lost, so we didn’t receive the workspace images that we would have needed to do contact science. Without those images we didn’t feel safe moving the arm. But the team …