Status Report

NASA Mars Rover Spirit Update: Light Duty for Now

By SpaceRef Editor
September 20, 2008
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NASA Mars Rover Spirit Update: Light Duty for Now

sol 1663-1668, September 05-11, 2008:

Spirit continues to conserve solar power while performing light science activities during the Martian winter. During the past week, Spirit studied the atmosphere and acquired two frames of the full-color image mosaic known as the “Bonestell panorama.”

Spirit is healthy and all subsystems are performing as expected as of the relay of information from NASA’s Odyssey orbiter on sol 1666 (Sept. 9, 2008). Solar-array energy and tau — a measure of atmospheric opacity caused by suspended dust — are holding steady at 245 watt-hours (100 watt-hours is the amount of energy needed to light a 100-watt bulb for one hour) and 0.20, respectively.

Sol-by-sol summary

In addition to taking daily measurements of dust-related changes in atmospheric opacity (tau), Spirit completed the following activities:

Sol 1663 (Sept. 6, 2008): Spirit recharged the batteries.

Sol 1664: Spirit acquired column 18 of the Bonestell panorama, using all 13 color filters of the panoramic camera.

Sol 1665: Spirit recharged the batteries.

Sol 1666: Spirit recharged the batteries.

Sol 1667: Spirit received new instructions from Earth via the rover’s high-gain antenna and relayed data to the UHF antenna on NASA’s Odyssey orbiter to be transmitted to Earth.

Sol 1668 (Sept. 11, 2008): Spirit monitored dust accumulation on the panoramic-camera mast assembly and acquired column 19 of the Bonestell panorama.


As of sol 1666 (Sept. 9, 2008), Spirit’s total odometry was 7,528.0 meters (4.7 miles).

SpaceRef staff editor.