MISSION UPDATES | October 19, 2020

Sol 2917: Something Old, Something New, Something 'Groken', Something Not-So-Blue

Written by Fred Calef, Planetary Geologist at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory
a drill hole at the center of the image with fractured rocks around it.

Groken drill hole and surrounding sand with fractured bedrock. Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS. Download image ›

Over the weekend, the rover analyzed our latest drill sample, “Groken,” with the CheMin instrument to look at what minerals it contained. Planning what the rover does next based on new results is often a marriage between what additional science we want to do now in trade for what new discoveries we can make later. In our case, the science team is excited to move on farther up Mt. Sharp, while also wanting to understand the new drill hole results with greater fidelity. Since the results were interesting , the science team decided to look for ‘something new’ now by running the rest of the remaining sample through SAM for an evolved gas analysis (EGA) to tease out the intricate chemistry of the rock. The ‘something old’ will be ten more ChemCam RMI images for the “Housedon Hill” mosaic of distant stratigraphy. ‘Something new’ also includes a second ChemCam target on “Vord,” the rock broken by the drill, including a ‘not so blue’ Mastcam color document image, as well as a dust devil search movie. Here’s to some new data this week, while also looking forward to a future drive!