It could be a long weekend in the United States, but on Tuesday, the Curiosity Rover doesn’t get a holiday.
Typically, the Curiosity team will plan all of Rover’s activities over the weekend and then leave the Rover to implement those plans while taking a well-deserved weekly break. The time for the rover is planned on “Souls” or Martian solar days, which is 24 hours, 39 minutes, 35 seconds longer than Earth’s day, one touch longer.
The team will usually plan 3-one weekends for curiosity, but this weekend off they needed to plan 5 solo activities for the rover. “To give Earthlings a holiday on Friday (American), we plan 5 single activities for Curiosity today,” NASA scientists wrote in a blog post. “But our rover must not miss a day with a mix of science and engineering activities over the long weekend.”
This image was taken by Rear Hazard Evidence Camera (Rear Hazcam) at NASA’s Mars Rover Curiosity on Soul 2809 N NASA / JPL-Caltech
An important task for the curiosity this weekend is to update the flight software of the routine computer as part of the routine software update. Even on Mars, the software needs to be updated regularly. During these updates, the rover will not be able to perform science activities. So these works will take the first and last single of the 5-Soul period. Software updates can be used to add new functionality to the rover and improve its systems, such as by twisting its autonomous driving capabilities.
Scientists need to make the best use of these software updates to continue this mission for as long as possible without direct physical access to the rover for years and even decades. In 2013, a software update was able to save Curiosity’s worn down wheels using traction control algorithms to reduce the speed and orientation of the wheels and improve traction.
Souls 2805-2809: Looking back at “Bloodstone Hill”, the Future Risk (FHA) figure from our current workplace. NASA / JPL-Caltech
While spending time performing software updates, Geo will perform a schedule of remote sensing sciences using its ChemCam and Mastcom instruments to investigate the rock environment near the geology theme group known as CO.
It is also currently in the dusty season of Tuesday, where the wind picks up tiny particles that cover most of the surface. NASA scientists wrote, “The amount of dust in the atmosphere has been rising for the past 2 weeks, although it is still within the normal range of the season above Gale Crater,” but they will keep an eye on the weather and look for dust devils to warn them in advance of a storm.