Status Report

NASA Mars Rover Status Report 21 April 2005

By SpaceRef Editor
April 22, 2005
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NASA Mars Rover Status Report 21 April 2005

SPIRIT UPDATE: Spirit Drives to ‘Methuselah’ – sol 456-462, April 21, 2005

Spirit has had a great week. The rover has completed some soil studies, taken lots of images, done a little driving, and captured a dust devil image with its panoramic camera. Late in the week, Spirit drove over to a piece of outcrop called “Methuselah.” Spirit is healthy and doing fine!

Sol-by-sol summaries:

Sol 456 (April 15, 2005): Spirit drove toward a soil target to perform a maneuver that engineers and scientists call a “scuff.” To scuff the soil, Spirit rotates and backspins one of its front wheels, creating a very shallow trench.

Sol 457, 458, 459: The scuffmark that Spirit created gave the science team a chance to do some soil studies. Spirit used its full complement of science instruments over the weekend (April 16 and 17, 2005) to learn about the soil.

Sol 460: Spirit took some additional images of the scuff with the microscopic imager, and then drove toward a piece of outcrop in the neighborhood, which attracted the eye of science team. The science team thinks the outcrop is pretty old and has given it the informal name Methuselah.

Sol 461: Using the panoramic camera, Spirit captured an image of a dust devil passing by.

Sol 462 (April 21, 2005): The plan is for Spirit to drive about 4 meters (13 feet) closer to Methuselah in order to be in position for an extended imaging campaign during the weekend.

SpaceRef staff editor.