BLOGMARS PERSEVERANCE ROVER


A Broken Rock Won’t Break Our Team
Mars Perseverance Sol 558 - WATSON Camera: NASA's Mars Perseverance rover acquired this image using its SHERLOC WATSON camera, located on the turret at the end of the rover's robotic arm. This image was acquired on Sept. 15, 2022 (Sol 558) at the local mean solar time of 15:10:44. Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech. Download image ›

NASA's Mars Perseverance rover acquired this image using its SHERLOC WATSON camera, located on the turret at the end of the rover's robotic arm.
Mars Perseverance Sol 564 - WATSON Camera: NASA's Mars Perseverance rover acquired this image using its SHERLOC WATSON camera, located on the turret at the end of the rover's robotic arm. This image was acquired on Sept. 21, 2022 (Sol 564) at the local mean solar time of 14:02:08. Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech. Download image ›
Last week, Perseverance attempted an abrasion on the Chiniak target at Enchanted Lake. Scientists and engineers worked together to plan this activity on an intriguing target of potentially fine-grained rocks at the base of the Jezero delta. But, when the images came down on sol 564 (September 21st), the once coherent rock target was broken, precluding any further proximity science or sampling on or near the target.

While working on operations, I have experienced what it’s like when significant effort is required to plan an activity, only for the plan to be thwarted by the unexpected response of Mars’ surface. Something I quickly noticed, however, is how these perceived setbacks do not dampen the spirits of the operators. In this way, the Mars 2020 team truly encapsulates the rover’s name “Perseverance.”

As soon as the team learned that the Chiniak abrasion attempt was unsuccessful, the scientists and engineers immediately worked to select an alternate abrasion target for the upcoming sols, in addition to investigating what information could be extracted from the broken rock surface. While we had to forgo abrasion proximity science on this target, we gained information about the cohesiveness and strength of the rock and had the opportunity to observe and compare both freshly broken and weathered rock surfaces. Thanks to the quick work of the science and engineers, a new target was selected for a successful abrasion just a couple of days later.

As an early career scientist that has worked on the team for about a year now, the Mars 2020 team’s internal perseverance has been an inspiration in my own life. In the science world, unsuccessful experiments can often be seen as failures. The work of the Mars 2020 Science Team has taught me how to view these scenarios as a learning opportunity, regain momentum towards a new goal, and never lose sight of the bigger picture.



About This Blog

These blog updates are provided by self-selected Mars 2020 mission team members who love to share what Perseverance is doing with the public.

Dates of planned rover activities described in these blogs are subject to change due to a variety of factors related to the Martian environment, communication relays and rover status.

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Contributors+

  • Mariah Baker
    Planetary Scientist, Smithsonian National Air & Space Museum
    Washington, DC
  • Matthew Brand
    SuperCam/ChemCam Engineer, Los Alamos National LaboratoryLos Alamos National Laboratory
  • Sawyer Brooks
    Docking Systems Engineer, NASA/JPL
    Pasadena, CA
  • Adrian Brown
    Deputy Program Scientist, NASA HQ
    Washington, DC
  • Denise Buckner
    Student Collaborator, University of Florida
    Gainesville, FL
  • Fred Calef III
    Mapping Specialist, NASA/JPL
    Pasadena, CA
  • Alyssa Deardorff
    Systems Engineer, NASA/JPL
    Pasadena, CA
  • Kenneth Farley
    Project Scientist, Caltech
    Pasadena, CA
  • Phylindia Gant
    Mars 2020 Student Collaborator, University of Florida
    Gainesville, FL
  • Brad Garczynski
    Student Collaborator, Purdue University
    West Lafayette, IN
  • Erin Gibbons
    Student Collaborator, McGill University
    Montreal, Canada
  • Michael Hecht
    Mars Oxygen In-Situ Resource Utilization Experiment (MOXIE) Principal Investigator, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
    Westford, MA
  • Louise Jandura
    Chief Engineer for Sampling & Caching, NASA/JPL
    Pasadena, CA
  • Bavani Kathir
    Student Collaborator on Mastcam-Z, Western Washington University
  • Lydia Kivrak
    Student Collaborator, University of Florida
    Gainesville, FL
  • Rachel Kronyak
    Systems Engineer, NASA/JPL
    Pasadena, CA
  • Steven Lee
    Perseverance Deputy Project Manager, NASA/JPL
    Pasadena, CA
  • An Li
    Student Collaborator on PIXL, University of Washington
  • Justin Maki
    Imaging Scientist and Mastcam-Z Deputy Principal Investigator, NASA/JPL
  • Sarah Milkovich
    Assistant Science Manager, NASA/JPL
    Pasadena, CA
  • Eleanor Moreland
    Ph.D. Student, Rice University
    Houston, Texas
  • Matt Muszynski
    Vehicle Systems Engineer, NASA/JPL
    Pasadena, CA
  • Claire Newman
    Atmospheric Scientist, Aeolis Research
    Altadena, CA
  • Avi Okon
    Sampling Operations Deputy Lead, NASA/JPL
    Pasadena, CA
  • Pegah Pashai
    Vehicle Systems Engineer Lead, NASA/JPL
    Pasadena, CA
  • David Pedersen
    Co-Investigator, PIXL Instrument, Technical University of Denmark (DTU)
    Copenhagen, Denmark
  • Eleni Ravanis
    Student Collaborator, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
    Honolulu, HI
  • Kathryn Stack
    Deputy Project Scientist, NASA/JPL
    Pasadena, CA
  • Vivian Sun
    Science Operations Systems Engineer, Staff Scientist, NASA/JPL
    Pasadena, CA
  • Iona (Brockie) Tirona
    Sampling Engineer, NASA/JPL
    Pasadena, CA
  • Jennifer Trosper
    Project Manager, NASA/JPL
    Pasadena, CA
  • Vandi Verma
    Chief Engineer for Robotic Operations, NASA/JPL
    Pasadena, CA
  • Rick Welch
    Deputy Project Manager, NASA/JPL
    Pasadena, CA
  • Roger Wiens
    Principal Investigator, SuperCam / Co-Investigator, SHERLOC instrument, Purdue University
    West Lafayette, IN

Tools on the Perseverance Rover+

The Perseverance rover has tools to study the history of its landing site, seek signs of ancient life, collect rock and soil samples, and help prepare for human exploration of Mars. The rover carries:


CAMERAS & SPECTROMETERS
GROUND-PENETRATING RADAR
ENVIRONMENTAL SENSORS
TECHNOLOGY DEMO
SAMPLE COLLECTION

Where is the Rover?

Image of a rover pin-point at Perseverance's location on Mars, Jezero Crater

View Map ›