Curiosity update: What lay beneath

1818MH0001900010701428C00_DXXX-br2Sol 1820, September 19, 2017, update by MSL scientist Michelle Minitti: Curiosity’s weekend “Brushfest” paid off, revealing the stunning purple color of the rocks of this part of the Vera Rubin Ridge (VRR) hiding below the veneer of dust on their surfaces. As Curiosity arrived at her new bedrock-rich workspace after a weekend drive of ~18 m, the science team had to decide whether to quickly interrogate a contact science target with MAHLI and APXS using a touch and go, or stay and find out what lay beneath the dust. There were hints around the workspace that color variations were present, with surfaces visible in shades of tan, gray and purple, so the science team decided to push the drive off a day and stay to use the Dust Removal Tool (DRT) once again on the VRR rocks in the workspace.

The science team was not only in a cleaning mood, they were in a tongue twisting mood, as evidenced by the names of the two MAHLI and APXS targets, “Passadumkeag” (a small Maine town) and “Pennessewassee” (a lake near Norway, Maine). Passadumkeag, a tan-colored target, will benefit from the DRT’s revelatory powers, while Pennessewassee, a more gray-colored target, will be interrogated as… [More at link]

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