Curiosity Navigation Camera Left B image taken on Sol 2582, November 11, 2019.
Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover is now wrapping up Sol 2583 duties.

Curiosity Front Hazard Avoidance Camera Left B image acquired on Sol 2582, November 11, 2019.
Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

Scott Guzewich, an atmospheric scientist at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, reports that over the weekend, the robot drove further uphill on Central Butte.

The Mars machinery is examining the complex layering that seems to be present at the butte.

Compelling workspace

Guzewich notes that imagery of the rover’s compelling workspace shows that the location was worth a few days of investigation.

Curiosity Navigation Camera Left B image taken on Sol 2582, November 11, 2019.
Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

“However, Curiosity is on a rather steep slope and tilted somewhat, which prevented us from being able to use the dust removal tool in this plan,” Guzewich adds.

 

Sample tactic

The plan is to use the Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) and the Alpha Particle X-Ray Spectrometer (APXS) on “Sourhope,” a vertically-oriented just below a dark-colored knob.

Curiosity Chemistry & Camera (ChemCam) Remote Micro-Imager (RMI) photo taken on Sol 2583, November 12, 2019.
Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/LANL

Also planned, Guzewich continues, is use of the Chemistry and Camera (ChemCam) on Sourhope in addition to “Foggy Moss” and “Hoxa.”

“The goal is to see if some of the material at the top of the butte (which we can’t directly reach), might have fallen down to this location where we can sample it,” Guzewich explains.

Curiosity Chemistry & Camera (ChemCam) RMI photo showing laser shots acquired on Sol 2582, November 11, 2019.
Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/LANL

Curiosity Navigation Camera Left B image taken on Sol 2582, November 11, 2019.
Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

On the second sol of the current plan, Mastcam images of these targets will be taken in addition to the top of the butte, and then search for dust devils and water ice clouds with Navcam, Guzewich concludes.

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