Curiosity update: ‘Dodging sand, updating ChemCam’

PIA19399_ipSol 980-82, May 8, 2015, update from USGS scientist Ryan Anderson: The Sol 978 drive stopped after going only a couple meters instead of the expected ~19 meters because Curiosity detected that its wheels were slipping in the sand. The rover periodically takes pictures of its surroundings while driving to make sure that it is actually moving forward and its wheels are not just spinning in place. This was a lesson learned years ago when the Opportunity rover got itself stuck in a sand ripple by spinning its wheels. Curiosity currently is in no danger of getting stuck: in the weekend plan we will just back up slightly and drive around the worst of the sand. [More at link]

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