Status Report

NASA Spirit Rover Grinds Hole in a Rock on Mars

By SpaceRef Editor
February 7, 2004
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The round, shallow depression in this image resulted from history’s first grinding of a rock on Mars.  The rock abrasion tool on NASA’s Spirit rover ground off the surface of a patch 45.5 millimeters (1.8 inches) in diameter on a rock called Adirondack during Spirit’s 34th sol on Mars, Feb. 6, 2004.  The hole is 2.65 millimeters (0.1 inch) deep, exposing fresh interior material of the rock for close inspection with the rover’s microscopic imager and two spectrometers on the robotic arm. 

This image was taken by Spirit’s panoramic camera, providing a quick visual check of the success of the grinding.  The rock abrasion tools on both Mars Exploration Rovers were supplied by Honeybee Robotics, New York, N.Y.

Image Credit: NASA/JPL/Cornell

SpaceRef staff editor.