Daily Updates - February 12, 2004
Opportunity Status at end of sol 19
During its 19th sol on Mars, which ends at 7:41 p.m. Thursday, PST, Opportunity climbed to Waypoint Charlie, where it will complete its initial survey of the outcrop nicknamed "Opportunity Ledge."
The flight team at JPL chose 'Here I Go Again' by Whitesnake as Opportunity’s wake-up music.
The plan for sol 20, which will end at 8:20 p.m. Friday, PST, is to do a "touch and go," meaning Opportunity will touch the soil with its instrument arm around the outpost area Charlie, then stow the arm and drive. It will head for an area of soil that the rover's miniature thermal emission spectrometer indicates is rich in hematite. Over the following few sols, engineers intend to use one of Opportunity’s wheels to spin into the soil and “trench” a shallow hole so scientists can check what's below the surface early next week. Knowing more about the hematite distribution on Mars may help scientists characterize the past environment and determine whether that environment provided favorable conditions for life.
Scientists and engineers will pore over the data collected along Opportunity Ledge this week to target a return trip to the most interesting science locations along the outcrop later next week.
Opportunity Daily Update Archive