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NASA Mars Exploration Rover Update 19 January 2006

Status Report From: Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Posted: Thursday, January 19, 2006

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SPIRIT UPDATE: Spirit at 'Arad' - sol 715-722, Jan 18, 2006:

Spirit is healthy and is driving as efficiently as possible toward "Home Plate." On the way to Home Plate, Spirit stopped to look at "Arad," where scientists encountered a cluster of white, powdery soil. Researchers decided to stop for a few days and use the robotic arm to conduct some measurements on it. Results are expected soon.

Sol-by-sol summaries:

Sol 715 (Jan. 6, 2006): Spirit performed untargeted remote sensing.

Sol 716: Spirit drove 54 meters (177 feet), using a combination of commanded and autonomous navigation.

Sol 717: Spirit drove only 1.38 meters (4.5 feet) on slippery terrain, experiencing slippage of 80 percent as the wheels were turning.

Sol 718: Spirit conducted untargeted remote sensing.

Sol 719: Spirit drove 9.3 meters (30.5 feet). The rover stopped when the slip rate of its wheels exceeded 80 percent in an area of sandy, unfamiliar terrain.

Sol 720: Spirit conducted untargeted remote sensing and atmospheric studies.

Sol 721: Spirit adjusted position to place the robotic arm next to Arad for a weekend of scientific measurements. The rover also used its panoramic camera and miniature thermal emission spectrometer to take images of targets called "Arad1" and "Arad2."

Sol 722: Spirit conducted untargeted remote sensing and took panoramic camera images of tracks created by the rover's wheels.

As of sol 722 (Jan. 14, 2006), Spirit's total odometry was 6,096 meters

(3.79 miles).

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