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NASA Mars Rover Opportunity Update: October 17-23, 2013

Status Report From:
Posted: Monday, October 28, 2013

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OPPORTUNITY UPDATE:  Busy Week of Science and Driving  - sols 3460-3466, Oct. 17, 2013-Oct. 23, 2013:

Opportunity is ascending the northern edge of 'Solander Point' at the rim of 'Endeavour Crater.'

The rover is maintaining favorable northerly tilts for improved energy production as winter approaches. On Sol 3460 (Oct. 17, 2013), Opportunity conducted an in-situ (contact) investigation of the outcrop named 'Kangaroo Paw' using the instruments on the end of the robotic arm. The Rock Abrasion Tool (RAT) was employed to brush the surface target prior to placement of the Alpha Particle X-ray Spectrometer (APXS).

On the next sol, a Microscopic Imager (MI) mosaic was collected, followed by another placement of the APXS. On Sol 3466 (Oct. 23, 2013), after several sols of APXS integration and Panoramic Camera (Pancam) and Navigation Camera (Navcam) remote sensing, the rover continued ascending Solander Point driving 41 feet (12.5 meters) forward towards more rock outcrop. Opportunity also fit in after the drive an atmospheric argon measurement with the APXS.

As of Sol 3466 (Oct. 23, 2013), the solar array energy production was 320 watt-hours with an atmospheric opacity (Tau) of 0.596 and a solar array dust factor of 0.514.

Total odometry is 23.90 miles (38.47 kilometers).

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