The Curiosity rover at Gale Crater is parked on prime of Mont Mercou offering a spectacular vantage level to survey each the terrain the robotic has pushed over and future areas of curiosity.
Reviews Lucy Thompson, a planetary geologist at College of New Brunswick; Fredericton, New Brunswick, Canada: “Based mostly on orbital signatures, we expect to come across a transition from comparatively clay-rich to sulfate-rich rocks as Curiosity continues to climb Mount Sharp. This will signify an environmental change on Mars, and imaging will assist us to observe this transition and supply context for future exploration.”
On the planning schedule, the rover’s Chemistry and Digicam (ChemCam) was to amass an extended distance Distant Micro-Imager (RMI) mosaic pointed in the direction of “Chavagnac,” inside the sulfate-bearing unit behind the rover, to the south.
Together with the Pattern Evaluation at Mars (SAM) Instrument Suite advanced gasoline evaluation (EGA) evaluation of the Bardou pattern, a weekend plan was stuffed with imaging actions using each the ChemCam RMI and Mastcam cameras.
Mastcam was set to amass mosaics to doc numerous sand-filled cracks on prime of Mont Mercou (“Villamblard,” “Queyssac” and “Sabouret”), in addition to a picture of the Bardou drill gap and surrounding powder, Thompson provides.
One other of those sand-filled cracks (“Cherval”) will likely be imaged with the ChemCam RMI.
Search for mud
Environmental monitoring will embody a Mastcam tau pointed in the direction of the solar at totally different instances of day, Mastcam crater rim extinction imaging to search for mud and Mastcam documentation of the sting of the Mont Mercou cliff.
Curiosity’s Navcam may also purchase pictures to observe mud exercise within the environment and to analyze mud satan exercise. Customary Radiation Evaluation Detector (RAD), Rover Environmental Monitoring Station (REMS), and Dynamic Albedo of Neutrons (DAN) actions had been additionally deliberate.
“We’re excited to investigate the chemistry of the Bardou drilled pattern in upcoming plans, earlier than driving away,” Thompson concludes.