Sols 2049-2051: Continuing Towards the North

Sols 2049-2051: Continuing Towards the North

Currently, Curiosity is exploring the Blunts Point member of the Murray formation and is searching for a suitable location to drill in the near future. The SOWG Chair led the team in putting together a busy weekend plan focused on completing contact science at the current location and driving further north into the Blunts Point member.

The plan includes a ChemCam water adsorption experiment to investigate seasonal variations in hydrogen in the soil at different times of day. The first sol will involve conducting contact science activities such as taking a MAHLI “dogs eye” image of the “Culver” target to assess the relationship between veins and bedding. This will be followed by using the DRT, MAHLI, and APXS instruments on typical bedrock at the “Floodwood” target, and conducting additional MAHLI and APXS analyses on the “Carleton” target to look for variations in chemistry.

After completing the overnight APXS integration on the “Floodwood” target, Curiosity will conduct another ChemCam water adsorption observation early in the morning on the second sol. Mastcam multispectral images will be taken around midday to document the activities conducted on Sols 2048-2049, along with a ChemCam passive sky observation and documentation images of the ChemCam targets. ChemCam LIBS will be used on the “Mountain Iron” target to assess the composition of dark nodules.

On the third sol, a drive to the north of approximately 10 meters will be conducted, followed by post-drive imaging to prepare for potential contact science activities or moving to a drill location in the following week. Data volume for this plan is tight due to recent downlink volumes, but efforts are being made to manage data usage effectively for the upcoming activities scheduled.

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