Sol 2639: SAM Is Feeling Better!

Release Date:

MSL blog post for January 8, 2020

MSL SAM Sol 2639

MSL Sol 2639: SAM Image

Sunrise was late this morning in Earth's mid-northern latitudes, so I made a point of looking for Mars before dawn when I woke up.  It was easily visible above Antares, the brightest star in Scorpius, named "not Mars" in Greek because it is about as red and bright as the planet.  Seeing that point of light in the morning sky reminded me how far away Mars is, and how fortunate we are to be operating a rover on its surface. 

Later this morning, when planning began for Sol 2639, SAM was still marked sick, so the strategically planned bump was replaced with targeted science.  Mastcam will extend the stereo mosaic of Western Butte and take a multispectral set of images of the "Ben Eighe" outcrop (upper right of center in https://mars.nasa.gov/raw_images/766444?site=msl).  After the re-planned bump to fix the wheelie, the AEGIS software will be used to autonomously acquire ChemCam observations of 2 targets in the new workspace, Navcam will search for dust devils, and MARDI will again acquire an image of the ground behind the left front wheel during twilight. 

Late during tactical planning this afternoon, SAM was marked healthy, so things are looking up for Sol 2640-2641 planning tomorrow.

Written by Dr. Ken Herkenhoff