NASA Mars Rover Opportunity Update January 17-22, 2013


OPPORTUNITY UPDATE: Opportunity At Work At 'Whitewater Lake' - sols 3194-3199, Jan. 17, 2013-Jan. 22, 2013:

Opportunity is on the inboard edge of "Cape York" on the rim of Endeavour Crater, performing an in-situ (contact) science investigation of veins in the light-toned outcrop "Whitewater Lake."

On Sol 3194 (Jan. 17, 2013), the rover collected a Microscopic Imager (MI) mosaic of the target "Ortiz3," then placed the Alpha Particle X-ray Spectrometer (APXS) on the target for an overnight integration. On Sol 3197 (Jan. 20, 2013), during an attempt to brush the vein surface target with the Rock Abrasion Tool (RAT), a stall in Joint 2 (shoulder elevation) of the robotic arm occurred. The stall occurred during a very slow upward movement of the arm. This kind of stall has been experienced before by the rover. The leading theory is that with such slow motion of the arm against gravity, the joint motor does not have sufficient momentum to overcome the magnetic detents within the joint actuator. Initial assessment indicates no degradation in the joint, but the project is continuing to investigate this. No "amnesia" events with the Flash file system have occurred since Sol 3183 (Jan. 6, 2013), and the rover is otherwise in good health. On Sol 3195 (Jan. 18, 2013), a small dust-clearing event occurred, improving solar array energy production slightly.

As of Sol 3199 (Jan. 22, 2013), the solar array energy production was 540 watt-hours with an atmospheric opacity (Tau) of 1.11 and an improved solar array dust factor of 0.651.

Total odometry is 22.03 miles (35455.34 meters).

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