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Checking Out Cheyenne And Testing Relay For Phoenix

Opportunity and NASA's Mars Odyssey orbiter are conducting a set of demonstrations using the relay between the rover and orbiter to aid planning for communications during NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander mission, slated for launch in August 2007 and landing in May 2008.
by Staff Writers
Pasadena CA (SPX) May 26, 2006
Opportunity Status for sol 818-824 Opportunity is healthy and continuing to make its way toward "Victoria Crater." Opportunity made 108 meters (354 feet) of progress in two sols of driving and was approximately 1,000 meters (just over half a mile) from Victoria Crater at the end of Sol 823.

Opportunity and NASA's Mars Odyssey orbiter are conducting a set of demonstrations using the relay between the rover and orbiter to aid planning for communications during NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander mission, slated for launch in August 2007 and landing in May 2008.

Sol-by-sol summaries

Sol 818 (May 13, 2006): Opportunity investigated a rock target called "Cheyenne." It used the microscopic imager to examine the target, then used the rock abrasion tool's wire bristles to brush the target. After the brushing, the alpha particle X-ray spectrometer collected data about what elements make up the rock. The rover also took images with the panoramic camera for a mosaic view from the location reached by Sol 817's drive.

Sol 819: Opportunity took a post-brush microscopic stereo image mosaic of Cheyenne and evaluated the target's mineral composition with the Moessbauer spectrometer. The rover also took a panoramic-camera image of "Pueblo," an area of layered outcrop.

Sol 820: Opportunity used its Moessbauer spectrometer on Cheyenne, observed the sky and ground with the miniature thermal emission spectrometer, and used the navigation camera to check for clouds.

Sol 821: The rover took images of Cheyenne using the 13 filters of the panoramic camera. Then it drove about 36.64 meters (120 feet) and took pictures from the new location with the navigation camera and the panoramic camera. It also used the panoramic camera for observing the sky.

Sol 822: Opportunity used its navigation camera to do rearward-looking imaging and cloud scans. The rover also used its miniature thermal emission spectrometer to observe the sky and ground, and it worked with Odyssey to conduct the second part of the Phoenix relay test. (The first part was on Sol 812.)

Sol 823: Opportunity drove 71.2 meters (234 feet) then took images from the new location with the navigation camera and the panoramic camera. The rover also used the panoramic camera to evaluate the clarity of the atmosphere, monitor dust on the camera mast and observe the sky.

Sol 824 (May 19, 2006): On this sol, Opportunity took rearward-looking images with its navigation camera, observed the ground and sky with its miniature thermal emission spectrometer, and assessed atmospheric clarity with its panoramic camera. During the sol's relay pass with Odyssey, the rover used the miniature thermal emission spectrometer again to observe the sky and ground.

Opportunity's total odometry as of Sol 821 (May 16, 2006) was 7,829.99 meters (4.87 miles)

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Mars Express Spots Lava Tubes On Pavonis Mons
Paris, France (SPX) May 23, 2006
This image, taken by the High Resolution Stereo Camera on board ESA's Mars Express, shows Pavonis Mons, the central volcano of the three shield volcanoes that comprise Tharsis Montes.









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