MISSION UPDATES | September 19, 2019

Sol 2531 - 2532: Three Portions to Inlet 1 and Straight on till SAM

Written by Abigail Fraeman, Planetary Geologist at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Sol 2531 - 2532: Three Portions to Inlet 1 and Straight on till SAM

Overnight image of the drill hole

In Monday's plan, we did portion drop tests of our "Glen Etive 2" drill sample, and this morning we were greeted with nice images of the sample piles. Our successful test means we are ready to deliver the Glen Etive 2 sample to Curiosity's analytical instruments for real today! Usually we send drill samples to CheMin for analysis first, but we've decided to do things backwards this time. For this drill, we want to deliver to SAM first to make sure we have enough sample available for both a standard SAM experiment and a special wet chemistry experiment. We feel pretty good about doing a SAM delivery first because we already have CheMin analyses on the nearby "Glen Etive 1" drilled sample, and we think it's likely Glen Etive 2 will be made of similar materials.

The star of today's plan is a triple portion dropoff to SAM on the first sol and an evolved gas analysis of that sample that will run overnight between the first and second sol. We have one hour available for remote sensing on the second sol of the plan. During that hour, we will take a ChemCam 1x10 observation along the wall of the Glen Etive 2 drill hole (pictured) and an associated Mastcam image. We will also take a multispectral image of a target named "Brawl," which is an area of rocks that were disturbed by the rover's wheels. We'll complement these geological measurements with observations of the environment, including a Mastcam tau (atmospheric dustiness) measurement, crater rim extinction movie, dust devil search, and overnight APXS integration to measure the argon levels of the atmosphere.