[meteorite-list] Mars Exploration Rovers Update - February 27, 2004
From: Ron Baalke <baalke_at_meteoritecentral.com>
Date: Thu Apr 22 10:31:29 2004
Spirit Status for sol 54
Heading To 'Humphrey'
posted Feb. 27, 5 pm PST
On sol 54, Spirit woke up to the song "Big Rock in the Road" by Pete
Wernick and made its final approach to the imposing rock called
"Humphrey" before the sol ended at 5:13 p.m. PST on Friday, Feb. 27.
The initial 3.5 meter (11.5 feet) drive toward the rock was cut short at
only 2.5 meters (8.2 feet) due to a built-in software safety. Rover
engineers quickly adjusted the software restriction and drove the final
meter of that planned drive, plus the 0.9 meters (about 3 feet) that put
the rover in the best position for brushing "Humphrey" with the rock
Before approaching the rock, Spirit used its alpha particle X-ray
spectrometer to investigate the areas the rock abrasion tool will brush
and grind. Unlike the last rock abrasion tool sequence on the rock called
"Adirondack," the planned procedure for "Humphrey" will include
brushing three separate areas of the rock. After brushing, Spirit will
back up and examine the brushed areas with the instruments on its arm.
The science team will then decide the best place to grind into
"Humphrey" - it could be one of the three brushed areas or another
section altogether. The hope is to remove as much dust as possible so
the instruments on Spirit's arm can get a pre-grinding "read" on the
rock coating and then, after grinding, study beneath the coating and
In the sols following the rock abrasion tool sequence, Spirit might
investigate an interesting rock behind it, or continue on toward
Opportunity Status for sol 33
Biting Blueberry Hill
posted Feb. 27, 10:30 am PST
On sol 33, which ended at 4:55 a.m. Friday, February 27, Opportunity
reached its second rock abrasion tool target site, and it's ready to take
the next bite of Mars.
Opportunity woke up a little late on sol 33 to conserve energy. The
wake-up song was 'Blueberry Hill' by Fats Domino, in honor of the hill
in front of the rover.
Opportunity took an early afternoon 360-degree panorama and an extra
observation of the area to the east with its navigation camera, while the
Moessbauer instrument completed the measurements it began on sol
The microscopic imager also took three sets of observations of the hole
created by the rock abrasion tool on sol 30. Opportunity later took
stereo images of the rock area named "Maya" and took pictures of an
area called "Half-Dome." Both the panoramic camera and the miniature
thermal emission spectrometer observed the sky.
In between science measurements, Opportunity stowed its instrument
arm and drove a 15-centimeter (6-inch) "bump" to reach its next rock
abrasion tool target. Final shutdown was at 2:37 Local Solar Time, with
a brief wakeup at 4:10 Local Solar Time to transmit data to the Mars
Odyssey orbiter as it flew over the rover.
The plan for the weekend is to grind into the upper part of "El Capitan"
dubbed "Guadalupe" and to take extensive measurements of the new
hole using the microscopic imager and two spectrometers.
Received on Fri 27 Feb 2004 08:10:02 PM PST