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01101001
Posted on: Aug 19 2012, 12:43 AM


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QUOTE (punkboi @ Aug 18 2012, 05:04 PM) *
Photos of the microchips and their location on Curiosity... smile.gif

Navcam image, I think:

http://mars.jpl.nasa.gov/msl-raw-images/pr...NCAM15000M_.JPG

The cleanroom image appears to have a cover plate with JPL logo. Plate is removed. Anyone know what the recessed area is? Below UHF antenna, above ChemCam calibration targets.
  Forum: MSL · Post Preview: #189062 · Replies: 16 · Views: 16338

01101001
Posted on: Nov 15 2008, 09:23 PM


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QUOTE (Vultur @ Nov 15 2008, 12:53 PM) *
I can never keep the Martian seasons straight - is it almost a year till the sun rises again and we can see the ice buildup?


The press-release image, Declining sunlight for Phoenix lander graphs over a few Earth years, showing the hours of sunlight, and noting Phoenix-mission sol numbers, and a few earth dates.

First sunlight looks to come about mission sol 400, middle of the ice encasement. I don't know when there'd actually be enough light at the right time to image the ice from orbit. It's about a year from now when Phoenix will be in vernal equinox and encasement will be waning.
  Forum: Phoenix · Post Preview: #131108 · Replies: 159 · Views: 90883

01101001
Posted on: Nov 10 2008, 11:01 PM


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Phoenix Project Archive Generation, Validation and Transfer Plan (PDF)

QUOTE
The Phoenix Project Level 1 requirements state that Level 0 and Level 1 imaging data shall be
archived with PDS within six months of the end of the mission, and all other Level 0 and Level 1
data shall be archived within 12 months of the end of the mission [Applicable Document 3]. The
actual delivery schedule will exceed these requirements: the Phoenix Project will make at least
two deliveries to the PDS, the first one no later than six months after Sol 30 data are received on
Earth, and the second one no later than six months after Sol 90 data are received on Earth. In the
event of an extended mission, subsequent data releases will occur for every 90 sols; for example,
Sol 180 plus six months, then Sol 270 plus six months, with the final delivery occurring no later
than six months after the last data have been received on Earth. Table 5 shows the dates for
archive data acquisition and release.


QUOTE
August 23, 2008 Sol 91: Start of extended mission
November 20, 2008 Sol 180
~ December 9, 2008 Delivery of data from Sols 1 to 30 to PDS two weeks before first release
~ December 23, 2008 First data release 6 months after sol 30
~ February 8, 2009 Delivery of data from Sols 31 to 90 to PDS two weeks before second release
~ February 22, 2009 Second data release 6 months after sol 90
TBD Subsequent data releases for every 90 sols through end of mission, with data
delivered to PDS two weeks in advance of release date.
  Forum: Phoenix · Post Preview: #130584 · Replies: 159 · Views: 90883

01101001
Posted on: Nov 10 2008, 09:40 PM


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I might as well link this here:

JPL Phoenix Mission News: Mars Phoenix Lander Finishes Successful Work on Red Planet (2008 November 10)

QUOTE
NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander has ceased communications after operating for more than five months. As anticipated, seasonal decline in sunshine at the robot's arctic landing site is not providing enough sunlight for the solar arrays to collect the power necessary to charge batteries that operate the lander's instruments.

Mission engineers last received a signal from the lander on Nov. 2. Phoenix, in addition to shorter daylight, has encountered a dustier sky, more clouds and colder temperatures as the northern Mars summer approaches autumn. The mission exceeded its planned operational life of three months to conduct and return science data.

The project team will be listening carefully during the next few weeks to hear if Phoenix revives and phones home. However, engineers now believe that is unlikely because of the worsening weather conditions on Mars. [...]
  Forum: Phoenix · Post Preview: #130561 · Replies: 159 · Views: 90883

01101001
Posted on: Nov 5 2008, 11:46 PM


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This is somewhat old news -- at least 24 hours old -- but I just saw this topic and thought it should be reported here:

Planetary Society Weblog: Phoenix update: Not dead yet [...]

QUOTE
Phoenix update: Not dead yet; still in "Lazarus mode;" one attempt at microphone use did not work
[...]
They attempted to use the MARDI camera, including its microphone, somewhere around sol 146 (give or take a couple sols). It did not respond. But Barry thought that perhaps they hadn't allowed sufficient time for the instrument to warm up before commanding it to take data. Barry said he has "become a true believer in trying to get the microphone on" ever since Veronica McGregor passed him a message that had been received on the Phoenix Twitter feed from a blind man who pointed out that he never had a chance to see the pictures from Mars; sound would allow him, and others like him, to experience a foreign planet for the first time. Barry said he has instructed the team to include an attempt to use the microphone somewhere in the terminal science mode sequence, but he wasn't sure where it fell.
[...]
  Forum: Phoenix · Post Preview: #130259 · Replies: 51 · Views: 36191

01101001
Posted on: Nov 3 2008, 03:37 PM


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Better news from NASA Phoenix Twitter:

QUOTE
I'm resting a lot but still communicating with orbiters once per day. Still hoping to get a bit of strength back & maybe do more science.
15 minutes ago from web

  Forum: Phoenix · Post Preview: #130123 · Replies: 87 · Views: 45618

01101001
Posted on: Nov 1 2008, 06:53 AM


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QUOTE (Harder @ Oct 29 2008, 09:00 AM) *
Is it known how the last TEGA days have been spent?


Nothing in the press releases. But, they've probably been too busy to say, if they've done anything along those lines.
  Forum: Phoenix · Post Preview: #129936 · Replies: 279 · Views: 91121

01101001
Posted on: Oct 31 2008, 10:28 PM


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QUOTE (tedstryk @ Oct 31 2008, 01:00 PM) *
Does anyone know if they ever got a chance to use the microphone?


The Twitter feed (October 29) gave an indication or two that it might be tried before too long, but then the storm hit.

QUOTE
The mic may still be turned on. But, it was never intended for use on this mission & it never had a heater- so it may be a longshot


If they had done it I think it would have been reported on Twitter or a news release.
  Forum: Phoenix · Post Preview: #129918 · Replies: 51 · Views: 36191

01101001
Posted on: Oct 31 2008, 01:42 AM


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The NASA Phoenix Twitter Feed is sounding sad but brave:

QUOTE
  • Take care of that beautiful blue marble out there in space, our home planet. Iíll be keeping an eye from here. Space exploration FTW! about 6 hours ago from web
  • In case we don't get this chance again, thank you all so much for the questions, comments & good wishes over the mission. It's been awesome. about 7 hours ago from web
    [...]
  • Many questions about next Martian summer and will I wake up? It is beyond expectations. But if it happens you'll be among the 1st to know. about 9 hours ago from web
  • I may go to sleep soon, @lordavon . But my "Lazarus mode" might allow me wake up now and then for short times during next few weeks. about 9 hours ago from web
  • I should stay well-preserved in this cold. I'll be humankind's monument here for centuries, eons, until future explorers come for me ;-) about 17 hours ago from web
  Forum: Phoenix · Post Preview: #129813 · Replies: 87 · Views: 45618

01101001
Posted on: Oct 30 2008, 09:16 PM


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Yeah, getting grim.

JPL Phoenix Mission News: Phoenix Mission Status Report (October 30)

QUOTE
NASA'S Phoenix Mars Lander, with its solar-electric power shrinking due to shorter daylight hours and a dust storm, did not respond to an orbiter's attempt to communicate with it Wednesday night and Thursday morning.

Mission controllers judge the most likely situation to be that declining power has triggered a pre-set precautionary behavior of waking up for only about two hours per day to listen for an orbiter's hailing signal. If that is the case, the wake-sleep cycling would have begun at an unknown time when batteries became depleted.

"We will be coordinating with the orbiter teams to hail Phoenix as often as feasible to catch the time when it can respond," said Phoenix Project Manager Barry Goldstein at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. "If we can reestablish communication, we can begin to get the spacecraft back in condition to resume science. In the best case, if weather cooperates, that would take the better part of a week."
[...]
  Forum: Phoenix · Post Preview: #129791 · Replies: 87 · Views: 45618

01101001
Posted on: Oct 29 2008, 11:47 PM


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Safe mode.

Planetary Society Weblog: Phoenix update: Entry into and exit from safe mode, no science for a few days' recharging

QUOTE
The Phoenix mission just issued a statement announcing that, in response to a "low power fault," the spacecraft went into safe mode yesterday. This much was actually expected to happen because of the instructions sent yesterday to the spacecraft to turn off the heater that once kept the robotic arm and TEGA instruments warm. However, the spacecraft evidently surprised mission control by taking more self-protective activities than were anticipated, switching unexpectedly to the "B" side of its electronics. (Like Hubble and indeed most spacecraft, Phoenix basically has two brains, one of them kept unused until and unless its first brain fails. I wish I had that.) It also shut down one of its two batteries.


JPL Phoenix Mission News: Phoenix Mission Status Report (October 29)
  Forum: Phoenix · Post Preview: #129723 · Replies: 87 · Views: 45618

01101001
Posted on: Oct 29 2008, 07:03 AM


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From the sunlight hours diagram from the last briefing, CO2 encasement begins around February 2, somewhere a little beyond sol 240. But, encasement is probably solid CO2 with no daily break, growing thicker each day.

Before that there'd be partial frosts that sublimated away during the day. University of Arizona Phoenix FAQ, probably written long ago, mentions CO2 frost:

QUOTE
However, summer will soon turn into the harsh Martian winter and mission management anticipates that the loss of sunlight, extreme arctic cold and accumulation of carbon dioxide frost will prevent operations by December or Jan 2009.


So, maybe we'll see some just before the end. Probably all depends on how long she can last.

Edit: This by AJS Rayl, back in the sunny days of May, also says it will be close: Planetary News: Phoenix (2008):

QUOTE
The mission will end when the Sun travels low enough in the sky that Phoenix no longer receives sufficient power. The spacecraft will conserve power as long as possible. The cameras will search for the first carbon dioxide frost deposits while the Meteorological Station (MET) instrument monitors the weather conditions.

The northern autumnal equinox will arrive on Mars on December 26, 2008, bringing winter darkness to the north pole. Phoenix will not survive past this date. In fact, it may not survive beyond November.
  Forum: Phoenix · Post Preview: #129638 · Replies: 87 · Views: 45618

01101001
Posted on: Oct 28 2008, 10:03 PM


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The beginning of the end:

JPL Phoenix Mission News: NASA's Phoenix Mission Faces Survival Challenges

Goodbye, robotic arm! Thanks!
  Forum: Phoenix · Post Preview: #129609 · Replies: 87 · Views: 45618

01101001
Posted on: Oct 26 2008, 07:16 AM


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QUOTE (Ipparchus @ Oct 25 2008, 10:48 AM) *
Do you know which TEGA ovens are full and with which samples? I really want to know the last sample deliveries! are we going to have an ice sample delivery? WHEN? Did they succeed with the WCL-3 try to push the sample into the cell?


I don't think they've announced the results of assisting soil into MECA WCL 3. I'm not sure, but I think the clog is shown before and after in robotic arm images from sol 147 raw images. It shows a mound that appears to to have been mashed. I haven't compared the scenery, or metadata, to see if it's near MECA WCL 3, nor have I examined the image to see parts of the MECA.

My scorecard for used ovens, at the end of September, is above. I'm pretty sure ovens 4, 5, 0, 7, and lately 6 have been announced to be filled.

Oven 3 still appears unopened.

Oven 2 had an organic-free blank delivery attempt during a windy time and probably little to no matter entered; I saw no announcement of success.

Oven 1 had at least 2 icy soil attempts, one missed, one clumped; I saw no announcement of success.

According to a recent press release (Phoenix Lander Finishes Soil Delivery to Onboard Labs), they are through attempting sample deliveries to anything.

A Mid-October press release (Phoenix Gets Bonus Soil Sample) said 6 of 8 ovens have been used, but doesn't specify which, or exactly what 'used' means -- attempted, delivered to, succesfully?
  Forum: Phoenix · Post Preview: #129481 · Replies: 279 · Views: 91121

01101001
Posted on: Oct 20 2008, 05:06 PM


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QUOTE (marsophile @ Oct 20 2008, 09:04 AM) *
The whole point of the D/H measurement for both the ice table and the atmosphere is to see if they are different, because that would indicate whether the ice table is ancient (possibly from an earlier ocean) or recent (from H2O frost or snow).


I believe they are coming to that conclusion independently of the D/H measurement. From the September 29 briefing, my contemporaneous notes, not a direct quotation, of Peter Smith's opening was:

QUOTE
Ice is connected to ice in atmosphere.

Shows panorama, and notes patterned ground, polygons and troughs, and where ice is under each. Don't see large rocks or dunes. Not much brought in by wind. Nearby: Helmdal Crater, a new crater (just 1 million years). This is not ancient, but new environment. What do we know?

Snow's coming down. Vapor in atmosphere. Vapor can freeze out on ice layer.


I don't recall how they are coming to that conclusion. In the same, was my note:

QUOTE
Haven't looked at ice isotopics.
  Forum: Phoenix · Post Preview: #129094 · Replies: 279 · Views: 91121

01101001
Posted on: Oct 19 2008, 04:22 AM


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QUOTE (akuo @ Oct 18 2008, 01:40 AM) *
That's some good news at least. No mention where the soil was from, though. The article also mentions that six of the ovens have been used so far. Therefore there has been one succesful delivery between the last teleconf and this sample acquisition. Likely an OFB sample delivery was finally succesful?


Oven 6 got the multiple samples named Rosy Red, the latest Rosy Red N and finally Rosy Red N+1. I believe they came from the Snow White neighborhood, Burn Alive Trench.

Emily Lackdawalla has a good trench map and sample list: Planetary Society Weblog: Catching up with Phoenix to sol 133 [...]

QUOTE
Sol 131: Rosy Red N to TEGA 6


I've followed closely and haven't seen success with OFB sample to oven #2, though I suppose they could be keeping it a secret. My scorecard at the September 29 briefing was:
#4, #5, #0 and #7: used.
#1 has had two delivery attempts of icy soil: one missed and one clumped on screen.
#2 appears to have since been targeted once for the Organic-Free Blank delivery, but that did not succeed.
#6 is barely open. (Now, successfully delivered.)
#3 is unopened.

  Forum: Phoenix · Post Preview: #128985 · Replies: 279 · Views: 91121

01101001
Posted on: Oct 13 2008, 04:52 PM


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QUOTE (Gray @ Oct 13 2008, 09:06 AM) *
I, too, was a little puzzled by the wording of the caption.


The press-release copy, Mars Particle and Terrestrial Soil, Compared Microscopically, had slightly more words than the web viewer pop-up, but uses language unfamiliar to me -- but 'microboxwork' sounds cool.

QUOTE
The image on the left is a particle of Martian soil observed with the atomic force microscope on NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander. For comparison, the image on the right is a type of terrestrial material viewed with a scanning electron microscope.

The Mars image covers an area approximately 10 microns wide. The smooth-surfaced, platy particle is consistent with the appearance of phyllosilicate soil. The Martian particle resembles the soil on the left and right perimeter of the terrestrial image.

The terrestrial image shows smectite microboxwork separated from denticulated pyroxene by large pore space. The particles are in a soil sample of saprolitized clinopyroxene from Koua Bocca, Ivory Coast, West Africa. This image's field of view is approximately 23 microns wide.


It says "for comparison" (and not "for contrast") so I take it as: the similarity of the Martian grain to a known Earth phyllosilicate sample, is evidence that the Mars grain is also likely a phyllosilicate. The comparison focuses on the left and right perimeter of the Earth sample.

Edit: I think the other bit of evidence for the phyllosilicate interpretation came from the briefing at the end of September. Planetary News: Phoenix (2008): Phoenix Detects Falling Snow, Digs Up Evidence for Past Water, and Snares Mission Extension

QUOTE
A high temperature release of water vapor from one of the samples is, Boynton said, “most likely” due to a clay mineral “in the class of minerals called sheet silicates.” While the best known example of a sheet silicate on Earth is mica, in this case on Mars, he said, we're not looking at mica but a different type in which a form of water is actually in the crystal structure between the different sheets.” It’s the water between the sheets that makes the clay minerals “much softer” than mica. The team’s identification of a clay mineral is somewhat ambiguous, he cautioned. “There are a few other minerals that could release water vapor at high temperatures, but we think the sheet silicates or clays are probably most likely.”


During the press conference there may have been mention of that new-release AFM image, so it might be worth digging up a transcript, if it exists. The above source also has:

QUOTE
Bolstering the TEGA evidence for clay minerals, the microscopy instrument on MECA, has turned up hints of a clay-like substance. "We are seeing smooth-surfaced, platy particles with the atomic force microscope, not inconsistent with the appearance of clay particles," Hecht said.


  Forum: Phoenix · Post Preview: #128576 · Replies: 133 · Views: 63176

01101001
Posted on: Oct 9 2008, 05:49 PM


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QUOTE (MahFL @ Sep 24 2008, 06:22 AM) *
Can I just get confirmation from someone that the white stuff in this picture is CO2 frost ?
Thank you.


I think we already covered this well: it's not CO2.

Here's a Space.com about the doomed Phoenix and the coming cold: Space.com: Frozen Death Looms for Phoenix Mars Lander

QUOTE
So far, the frost hasn't formed on the lander — except for on the small mirror used to view the wind telltale at the top of the meteorological mast — because Phoenix stays warmer than the ground around it.

"In general the lander itself is designed to absorb as much solar radiation as it can, and to emit relatively little radiation in the infrared. So the lander deck has been much hotter than the surrounding ground surface, for instance," [meteorological team member Peter] Taylor explained. "It's a bit like the top of a relatively warm computer, if you like."

The lander will likely stay warmer than its surroundings for awhile after Phoenix loses the energy it needs to operate, "so it'll be pretty late on when frost actually starts to form on the lander," Taylor said. So Phoenix isn't likely to get any pictures of itself coated in frost.

Right now the frost that is forming is all water ice because it is not yet cold enough at Phoenix's latitude for carbon dioxide ice to form, though it eventually will. Whether the frost will come as a thin coating or a thick sheet, like Mars' polar ice caps, isn't known.
  Forum: Phoenix · Post Preview: #128296 · Replies: 416 · Views: 137761

01101001
Posted on: Oct 9 2008, 01:00 AM


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QUOTE (mcaplinger @ Oct 8 2008, 05:47 PM) *
Does anyone know where the SSI exposure times might be tabulated?


Like this?

QUOTE
Integration time 0-335 s in steps of 5.12 ms


From Texas A&M University Surface Stereo Imager Vital Statistics

From Texas A&M University Phoenix Surface Stereo Imager (SSI)
  Forum: Phoenix · Post Preview: #128198 · Replies: 51 · Views: 36191

01101001
Posted on: Sep 29 2008, 07:16 PM


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Release: JPL Phoenix Mission News: NASA Mars Lander Sees Falling Snow, Soil Data Suggest Liquid Past (September 29)

My own inept live transcript -- with connection glitches -- begins at BAUT Forum article in topic Phoenix on Mars: Extended Mission
  Forum: Phoenix · Post Preview: #127155 · Replies: 416 · Views: 137761

01101001
Posted on: Sep 29 2008, 12:31 PM


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QUOTE (Ipparchus @ Sep 29 2008, 05:16 AM) *
When is the Phoenix team going to deliver the last TEGA sample? 30th September or later? according to their energy levels until when is this possible? Now we should wait the next sample to be from "Upper Cupboard"(ice sample)? in which oven are they going to drop it? are the previous two deliveries, from "Snow White" and OFB successful?


I think they didn't put out news releases about all that so they'd have some things to talk about at the briefing today.

Phoenix Lander Update Briefing: Monday, September 29

NASA TV Schedule:

QUOTE
September 29, Monday
[1100 PDT; 1400 EDT; 1800 UTC] - Mars Phoenix Lander Update Briefing - HQ/JPL - HQ (Public and Media Channels)


NASA TV (or NASA TV Yahoo! source or high-resolution)
NASA TV Media Channel
  Forum: Phoenix · Post Preview: #127113 · Replies: 416 · Views: 137761

01101001
Posted on: Sep 29 2008, 11:47 AM


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Sol 123 Raw Images

Source of the white stuff, the Organic-Free Blank:


  Forum: Phoenix · Post Preview: #127110 · Replies: 279 · Views: 91121

01101001
Posted on: Sep 29 2008, 04:59 AM


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QUOTE (Aussie @ Sep 28 2008, 09:45 PM) *
Where was this sample from? Ice or salts?


Smart money's on organic-free blank. It's the whitest thing around.

The wind was blowing when the delivery was attempted, if you believe the telltale. It was hopping around 10:30 local time that sol.

Sol 122 Raw Images

For instance, at 1033 local:
  Forum: Phoenix · Post Preview: #127095 · Replies: 279 · Views: 91121

01101001
Posted on: Sep 28 2008, 06:13 AM


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Possible TEGA, maybe oven #2, delivery on sol 122.

Sol 122 Raw Images

Interesting white stuff, scoop before (1028 local time), TEGA (1041), scoop after (1047):

  Forum: Phoenix · Post Preview: #127007 · Replies: 279 · Views: 91121

01101001
Posted on: Sep 26 2008, 05:10 PM


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QUOTE (Ipparchus @ Sep 23 2008, 01:40 AM) *
From which trenches do you think the next TEGA samples are going to be? what will they do with the unsuccessful TEGA-1 Snow White sample? they will leave it as it is or they`ll try to fill it with more sample?


I think Sol 120 Raw Images documents a second delivery from Snow White to TEGA #1.

Small sample in the scoop (0749 local time) and the scoop over #1 (0757) and the scoop empty (0825):


Before (0717) and after (0750), trench probably Snow White:
  Forum: Phoenix · Post Preview: #126893 · Replies: 279 · Views: 91121

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