Curiosity Mission Updates
Sol 1674: Slipping into a new planWritten by Michelle Minitti and Michael Battalio on 04.21.2017
NASA's Mars rover Curiosity acquired this image using its Left Navigation Camera (Navcams) on Sol 1673 Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech
In the Sol 1673 drive, the rover planners aimed us for a nice curb of Murray bedrock which we could investigate with targeted science (with Mastcam and ChemCam) and contact science (with APXS, MAHLI and the dust removal tool (DRT)) over the weekend. The rover has to be sitting stably on the terrain for us to conduct contact science, with none of the six wheels in danger of slipping off a rock as we deploy the arm and turret. The arm and turret together are over 2 m in length and 95 kg in mass, providing a lever arm significant enough to move even our 900 kg rover! When placing APXS in contact with a rock, or MAHLI 1 cm away from a rock, the last thing you want is for the rover to move. While the rock in our workspace was indeed enticing, the rover planners found that two of our wheels were partially perched on rock slabs like those in the workspace, precluding us from using APXS and getting MAHLI any closer than 10 cm to any target in the workspace.
About this Blog
These blog updates are provided by self-selected Mars Science Laboratory mission team members who love to share what Curiosity is doing with the public.
Dates of planned rover activities described in these reports are subject to change due to a variety of factors related to the Martian environment, communication relays and rover status.