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Curiosity Mission Updates

NASA's Mars rover Curiosity acquired this image using its Mast Camera (Mastcam) on Sol 1853 Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS

Our exploration of space, and Gale Crater specifically, is enabled by incredible technology and amazing engineers and scientists. But, circumstances constantly remind us that space is hard. It's a hostile environment to both people and technology and we have to strive constantly to keep things working so we can continue to explore Gale Crater. Since last December, that has involved Curiosity's team of engineers and scientists working to diagnose and then work-around a problem with the drill. That effort has made excellent progress and we hope to be able to drill Mars rocks again in the not-too-distant future! Associated with that is designing new methods to deliver samples of those rocks to Curiosity's laboratories: CheMin and SAM. Mastcam imaged the inlets for SAM on the rover deck yestersol.

We prepared a packed science plan for Curiosity today, including a SAM analysis of a "doggy-bagged" sample of martian sand from a location called "Ogunquit Beach" that the rover visited months ago and a sure-to-be spectacular Mastcam panorama of the Gale Crater floor ("Aeolis Palus" in scientific jargon). However, space is hard, and some technical issues with NASA's Deep Space Network of satellite dishes around the world prevented us from sending Curiosity its marching orders. But, those activities will hopefully be retried in the next few days.

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.

Contributors
Tools on the
Curiosity Rover
The Curiosity rover has tools to study clues about past and present environmental conditions on Mars, including whether conditions have ever been favorable for microbial life. The rover carries:

Cameras

Spectrometers

Radiation Detectors

Environmental Sensors

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