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NASA’s Mars rover Curiosity’s fourth scoop of Martian Soil to be analyzed by Chemistry and Mineralogy (CheMin) instrument this week

Posted By News Staff On Tuesday, October 23, 2012 @ 12:30 am In News | No Comments

Written by Guy Webster
NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory

NASA - National Aeronautics and Space AdministrationPasadena, CA – NASA’s Mars rover Curiosity shook a scoopful of dusty sand inside its sample-handling mechanism on Sol 75 (October 21st, 2012) as the third scrubbing of interior surfaces of the mechanism.

The rover team is instructing the rover to deliver a sieved sample from this scoopful — the mission’s fourth — onto Curiosity’s observation tray on October 22nd and plans to analyze another sample from the same scoopful with the Chemistry and Mineralogy (CheMin) instrument later this week.

The Chemistry and Camera (ChemCam) instrument on NASA's Mars rover Curiosity used its laser and spectrometers to examine what chemical elements are in a drift of Martian sand during the mission's 74th Martian day, or sol (October 20th, 2012). Image (Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/LANL/CNES/IRAP/LPGN/CNRS) [1]

The Chemistry and Camera (ChemCam) instrument on NASA’s Mars rover Curiosity used its laser and spectrometers to examine what chemical elements are in a drift of Martian sand during the mission’s 74th Martian day, or sol (October 20th, 2012). Image (Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/LANL/CNES/IRAP/LPGN/CNRS)

Curiosity collected this fourth scoop of soil on Sol 74 (October 20th). A later scoop will become the first delivered to the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument.

While continuing with scooping activities at the “Rocknest” site, the rover also has been examining surroundings with the Chemistry and Camera (ChemCam) and Mast Camera (Mastcam) instruments, and monitoring environmental conditions with the Radiation Assessment Detector (RAD), Rover Environmental Monitoring Station (REMS) and Dynamic Albedo of Neutrons (DAN) instruments of its science payload.

Sol 75, in Mars local mean solar time at Gale Crater, ended at 8:58am October 22nd, PDT (11:58am, EDT).

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