Thursday, February 18, 2010

Forgoten: Spirit and Opportunity

SPIRIT UPDATE: Spirit Parks for the Winter - sols 2166-2170, February 5-9, 2010:

Spirit is now parked for the winter in the embedded area called "Troy" on the west side of Home Plate.

The last winter-preparatory movement of the rover was commanded on Sol 2169 (Feb. 8, 2010). The rover was commanded to flatten the suspension system on the right side and accentuate the suspension wheelie on the left side, all to enhance northerly tilt. Very little change in tilt was achieved.

At this point, the project is now adjusting various rover parameters and positioning the robotic arm for the winter period. The communication window for various fault conditions has been adjusted to the optimal time of day during the coldest part of the winter. A special table of long-range UHF communication passes is being developed to cover the entire winter period and beyond.

As of Sol 2170 (Feb. 9, 2010), the rover solar array energy production was to 185 watt-hours with an atmospheric opacity (tau) of 0.292 and a dust factor of 0.527. Total odometry is 7,730.50 meters (4.80 miles).

Spirit Update Archive

OPPORTUNITY UPDATE: Opportunity Studies 'Chocolate Hills' Rock - sols 2145-2151, February 4-10, 2010:

Opportunity is exploring around the rim of the very young crater "Concepcion."

On Sol 2145 (Feb. 4, 2010), the rover made a 10-meter (33-foot) approach to a rock target called "Chocolate Hills." This rock target is of interest because it exhibits a dark rind or crust that may be impact melt. On Sol 2147 (Feb. 6, 2010), Opportunity completed a 2-meter (7-foot) short approach to bring the target within the work volume of the robotic arm (IDD). On Sol 2149 (Feb. 8, 2010), the rover performed a small turn-in-place to position the target within reach of the IDD with its 4-degree-of-freedom azimuth limitations. On the next sol, the IDD collected a Microscopic Imager (MI) mosaic of the dark rind and then placed the Alpha Particle X-ray Spectrometer (APXS) for an integration. On the following sol, another set of Microscopic Imager mosaics were collected and then the Mössbauer (MB) spectrometer focused on the target called "Aloya."

The right-front wheel currents continue to be well-behaved. No improvement has been observed yet in the miniature thermal emission spectrometer (Mini-TES) elevation mirror, which continues to be opened regularly to allow cleaning by the wind.

As of Sol 2151 (Feb. 10, 2010), the solar array energy production was 306 watt-hours with an atmospheric opacity (tau) of 0.388 and a dust factor of 0.487. Total odometry is 19,335.35 meters (12 miles).

Opportunity Update Archive

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