Status Report

NASA Mars Rover Opportunity Update sols 2757-2763, October 26 – November 01, 2011

By SpaceRef Editor
November 4, 2011
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OPPORTUNITY UPDATE: On the Lookout for Light-Toned Material – sols 2757-2763, October 26 – November 01, 2011:

The seasonal plan for Opportunity is to winter over on the north end of Cape York on the rim of Endeavour crater where northerly tilts are favorable for solar array energy production.

As such, the project has been driving the rover towards the north end of the cape with a route along the west side that creates opportunities for science along the way. The science team is on the lookout for veins of light-toned material and has found some.

On Sol 2758 (Oct. 27, 2011), Opportunity traveled north/northwest about 180 feet (55 meters) heading toward a geologic contact that borders Cape York on the west. The next drive on Sol 2760 (Oct. 29, 2011), moved the rover roughly north to the contact. Imagery from the end of the Sol 2760 drive showed these light-toned veins the science team was searching for, one just a few feet (meters) in front of the rover. On Sol 2763 (Nov. 1, 2011), Opportunity bumped 12 feet (3.7 meters) placing this light-toned vein, called “Homestake” within reach of the rover’s robotic arm. The plan ahead is to collect some Microscopic Imager (MI) images of the vein and place the Alpha Particle X-ray Spectrometer (APXS) on the vein itself for an overnight integration.

As of Sol 2763 (Nov. 1, 2011), solar array energy production was 304 watt-hours with an atmospheric opacity (Tau) of 0.752 and a solar array dust factor of 0.494.

Total odometry is 21.25 miles (34,199.25 meters, or 34.20 kilometers).

SpaceRef staff editor.