MISSION UPDATES | April 14, 2021

Sol 3090-3091: No MAHLI Today

Written by Ken Herkenhoff, Planetary Geologist at USGS Astrogeology Science Center
Parts of the Curiosity rover and Mars terrain

This image was taken by the Left Navigation Camera onboard NASA's Mars rover Curiosity on Sol 3088. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech. Download image ›

The Sol 3088 drive went well, and there is lots of bedrock in the arm workspace. The strategic plan included full contact science to support selection of the next drill target, but unfortunately the Sol 3088 MAHLI activities did not complete as expected, so no MAHLI imaging is planned today while the team evaluates MAHLI telemetry. But we're still planning to brush a bedrock target named "Bardou" and observe the brushed spot and a nearby unbrushed spot with APXS, to help understand the compositions of the bedrock, dust, and sand in the area. Before deploying the arm, a passive ChemCam observation of Bardou is planned, along with RMI mosaics of distant targets on the flank of "Mt. Sharp" and what appears to be a windblown drift deposit near the top of "Mont Mercou." Later in the afternoon of Sol 3090, the Left Mastcam will acquire a full 360-degree mosaic, which is likely to provide a spectacular view.

After the arm is moved out of the way late in the morning of Sol 3091, Navcam and Mastcam will measure the amount of dust suspended in the atmosphere, then Mastcam will acquire a multispectral observation of the brushed spot and stereo mosaics of "Mini Mont Mercou" and a ridge in the distance toward the southwest. Finally, the Left Mastcam will survey the sky for clouds during twilight.