Fri. Jan 21st, 2022

Perseverance Rover's equipment with a few orange stones stuck near an opening.

Perseverance Rover has run into one The problem is that a Martian rock sample taken on December 29 has not been properly transferred to the rover’s long-term storage. NASA is currently working on how to remove debris from rover equipment before moving on to more samples.

Samples and caching from NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory by Lewis Jandura, Chief Engineer NASA blog post The problem occurred when the rock sample was being removed from the end of a robotic arm that drilled on a carousel that held the sample tubes. Persistence track resistance sensors when the coring bit holding the sample first comes in contact with the carousel, and this time, pulls more than usual.

The perseverance team pinged the rover for more information and images and asked the rover to separate the sample from the drill bit and carousel. That separation took place on January 8, And NASA has received the information January 7th.

Images from the rover show several bits of Regolith and PebThe; The team suspects that the wreckage pieces Lay out cored rock, which falls out during the drop-off process Drill bits from nestling neatly into the carousel.

Jandura noted that perseverance is able to preserve specimens despite the presence of debris on the way, but 2.7-billion-dollars The rover is still relatively new to the Red Planet and has Many more sciences In the store, the team is hoping to clean up Pebbles Before continuing the mission.

The specimen comes from a rock outcrop called Isol, where the team hopes to collect a pair of specimens from the floor of an area called Sitah, which is recognized for its large, navigable hard sand tiller. The rock of Séitah is of particular scientific interest, e.g. Note A. NASA blog from November: “[B]By studying the direction in which the y layers tilted, we have determined that the rocks of Seitah are probably the oldest rocks unearthed in all the Jejiro holes. Setah therefore represents the beginning of an accessible geological record and the opportunity for one-on-one missions to explore the full breadth of landscape evolution. “

The circle shows the injured rock surface where the rover collected the sample.

Eventually, the rover will reach the western end of the Jejiro crater, which is believed A dry river delta. Based on The fossils of germ organisms on earth, the perseverance team thinks holes One of the best places to search for signs Ancient Martian life.

Perseverance has brought 43 sample tubes to Mars, of which seven have been filled. The first and second tubes Did not contain any rocks, But the rest has been successfully saved. NASA wants to bring this by the end of this decade Samples of those rocks are on Earth, where they could be analyzed for the next few years.

Of course, the rover must first overcome the recent sampling barrier. But for a reason it was named Perseverance.

More: Perseverance Rover images reveal the ancient history of the Martian hole soaked in water

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