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8 October 2019

Sol 2549: A Slow Monday on Earth, but an Exhausting One on Mars

Despite the simplicity of today’s planning on Earth, the rover has a lot to get done before tomorrow. Let’s just hope all the activity doesn’t “exhaust” her… it’s only Monday, after all!

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5 October 2019

Sols 2546-2547: Brrrr – Is It Frosty?

Communicating with Curiosity requires creating a plan and transmitting it through various networks, including the Deep Space Network. Sometimes, one of these networks is down, and our plan does not get to the rover.

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30 September 2019

Sol 2540-2542: Go, SAM, go!

Curiosity’s late afternoon view: This image was taken by the Front Hazard Avoidance Camera onboard NASA’s Mars rover Curiosity on Sol 2536 (2019-09-25 00:12:06 UTC). It shows the same view as the image in the sols 2538-2539 blog, just in a very different light!

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Sol 2543: Dumping Dirt on its Back

This image shows nine laser pits forming a line down the “Glen Etive 2” drill hole. Shock waves from the laser impact at the lowest point cleared debris that had settled at the bottom of the hole to allow analysis of the hole wall at that depth.

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26 September 2019

Sols 2538-2539: An Intermission Filled with Remote Sensing

Today started off with the news that yestersol‘s plan did not fully complete. There was an issue in the set of planned SAM activities that resulted in those activities not completing. While we diagnose the issue, we are taking a break from drill activities and filling the plan with lots of remote science.

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24 September 2019

Sols 2536-2537: SAM Wet Chemistry Experiment

Searching for organic molecules in rocks on Mars is no easy task. Curiosity’s Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument is designed to analyze the chemical composition of gases, which it creates by slowly heating rock samples in an oven.

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20 September 2019

Sols 2533-2535: SAM’s Starring Role!

Planning for this past week has centered on analyzing the high potassium drill sample, Glen Etive 2, using the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument.

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17 September 2019

Sols 2529-2530: #23!

Please welcome our 23rd drill hole on Mars! Coming in at ~43 mm depth, and both the rover and new drill hole are happy and healthy!

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16 September 2019

Sols 2525-2528: Go for Drilling at Glen Etive 2!

After studying the results from the ‘Glen Etive 1’ drill hole over conjunction, the team has decided to proceed with a second drill hole at a nearby location, dubbed ‘Glen Etive 2,’ (see above image) on the same rock slab. This second drill will allow us to do a more detailed set of SAM and CheMin analyses to better understand the composition of this rock.

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11 September 2019

Sol 2524: The Tail(ings)-end of the Glen Etive 1 Drilling Campaign

The focus of Curiosity’s activities since returning to operations after conjunction, now that Mars has safely moved out from behind the sun, is to finish up the analyses associated with the drilling campaign at ‘Glen Etive 1.’

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