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View Full Version : MER press conference, March 5, 2004



ToSeek
2004-Mar-05, 06:14 PM
Highlights from today's press conference:

- Combined 100 days (sols) on Mars from Spirit and Opportunity.
- "Berry Bowl" and "Slickrock" are Opportunity's targets for sol 41 (tomorrow), kind of over to the left side of the outcrop. The rover is now more toward the middle, at Last Chance.
- Spirit to do 20-25 meter drive toward Bonneville today (maybe even during press conference). Expect to take about 10 sols to get there.
- Once at rim of Bonneville, will have to decide whether to go in or head for the hills.
- Elvis found, Martians will trade him for Britney Spears. I say go for it.
- 2.1 mm hole ground in Humphrey. Geologists very happy. Looks like a volcanic rock that has had some fluids flow through it.
- Humphrey is a wimpy rock. (Well, "not very strong" is the phraseology used.)

ToSeek
2004-Mar-05, 06:23 PM
- The RAT lead scientist appears to be wearing a tribble on his head.
- By "not very strong," he says between limestone and a weak basalt.
- I was just kidding about Elvis and Britney. They actually want Beyonce.

Glom
2004-Mar-05, 06:25 PM
Never! We will never surrender Beyonce for any price! Unless it's a big price.

ToSeek
2004-Mar-05, 06:33 PM
- Created real messes from using RAT at McKittrick (lower part of outcrop) and Guadalupe (upper part of outcrop). Lots of dust.
- RAT results from McKittrick looks like fine-grained hematite. Will use APXS, Mossbauer to assess.
- Similar results from Guadalupe.
- Nice panorama from Opportunity of crater to east with heat shield to south. Very, very flat terrain - should be great driving for Opportunity. Dark rock to south, bounce marks visible - seem to be able to see all bounce marks back to first one. Not only hit the crater but hit the only rock around.
- Opportunity to finish up with crater and head out, probably about same time as Spirit reaches Bonneville.

ToSeek
2004-Mar-05, 06:41 PM
- Martians have changed their minds and now want to appear on a new reality show called Solar System Idol. Say if Simon makes any sarky remarks about them he'll be vaporized.
- Magnetic particle experiment is picking up some stuff that's getting blown around in the atmosphere.

Question time....

ToSeek
2004-Mar-05, 06:49 PM
- Humphrey definitely volcanic, exposed to water at or shortly after crystallization. Not the soaking seen by Opportunity.
- Successfully acquired eclipse images on Sol 39 (Opportunity), not all downloaded. (Some images here (http://marsrovers.jpl.nasa.gov/gallery/all/opportunity_p039.html).) Will be able to see Phobos do the same thing in the next week - should be more dramatic since Phobos is much closer.
- Would Martians please, please take Janet and Michael Jackson? Dr. Arvidson said he'd see what he could do.
- "Blueberries" still being studied - will look at "bowl" of them shortly.
- Arvidson convinced there's crossbedding but team is divided. Micro images will verify.

ToSeek
2004-Mar-05, 06:52 PM
- Rovers each have a toothbrush to clean off the RAT. (I am not making this up.) Hasn't been used yet, though.
- End of briefing. No word on fates of Janet and Michael. Martians were ready to trade anti-gravity, time-travel, hyperspace drive for Beyonce but have backed off since Glom was opposed.

nebularain
2004-Mar-05, 07:16 PM
Thanks, ToSeek! That's pretty cool!

:: Wishing I had something intelligent to say ::

johnwitts
2004-Mar-05, 07:36 PM
Darn, I missed it. I thought it was supposed to be yesterday? Never mind, it's usually repeated around midnight. and I'll still be up waiting for the Aussie Grand Prix Qualifying.

ToSeek
2004-Mar-05, 08:09 PM
Darn, I missed it. I thought it was supposed to be yesterday?

It was originally supposed to be yesterday - maybe they moved it back due to the other press conference earlier this week.

Swift
2004-Mar-05, 08:31 PM
- The RAT lead scientist appears to be wearing a tribble on his head.
I guess it would be worse if the TRIBBLE scientist was wearing a rat on his head. #-o
(TRIBBLE of course is the Tool for Rock Investigations By BiLateral Examination). :D

Swift
2004-Mar-05, 08:36 PM
Thanks, ToSeek! That's pretty cool!

:: Wishing I had something intelligent to say ::
Why don't you just say silly things like the rest of us? :roll:

By the way, on the trade of Beyonce for anti-gravity, time-travel, and hyperspace drive, we'll throw in Brittany and N'Sync for immortallity and a minor-league technology to be named at a latter date.

ToSeek
2004-Mar-05, 09:39 PM
Opportunity press release images from today (http://marsrovers.jpl.nasa.gov/gallery/press/opportunity/20040305a.html)

My favorite is the sawtoothed panorama toward the bottom. You can see the larger crater they're planning on heading for, the heat shield, and the orange blotches where the rover bounced - including the only rock visible in the whole image, which the rover bounced on.

Spirit press release images from today (http://marsrovers.jpl.nasa.gov/gallery/press/spirit/20040305a.html)

Humphrey's been branded! (http://marsrovers.jpl.nasa.gov/gallery/press/spirit/20040305a/05-ra-03-humphrey-A061R1_br.jpg)

nebularain
2004-Mar-05, 10:53 PM
- The RAT lead scientist appears to be wearing a tribble on his head.

You mean the guy on the right here?
http://www.cnn.com/2004/TECH/space/03/05/mars.rovers.ap/index.html
:o

ToSeek
2004-Mar-05, 10:57 PM
- The RAT lead scientist appears to be wearing a tribble on his head.

You mean the guy on the right here?
http://www.cnn.com/2004/TECH/space/03/05/mars.rovers.ap/index.html
:o

Yep, that's him.

nebularain
2004-Mar-05, 11:06 PM
Calling it a "tribble" was too kind. . . .
:-#

Maksutov
2004-Mar-06, 01:28 AM
- Rovers each have a toothbrush to clean off the RAT. (I am not making this up.) Hasn't been used yet, though.
- End of briefing. No word on fates of Janet and Michael. Martians were ready to trade anti-gravity, time-travel, hyperspace drive for Beyonce but have backed off since Glom was opposed.

Some of the media headlines have been essentially "Spirit finds water on Humphrey!" which leads to the question, "Was this water on Humphrey before or after that RAT drilling?" :)

Seriously, thanks for all the work transcribing the news briefing. Good job. And great humor. Good thing the Martians don't know about draft picks!

Superluminal
2004-Mar-06, 03:20 AM
That's not a tribble. But that guy does look like an alien from an episode of Trek, can't remember which one. #-o

Superluminal
2004-Mar-06, 04:05 AM
Hmm. Opportunity hit the only large rock in the area. How long will it be before someone blows the picture up and reveals road kill or a squished Martian with a welcome to Mars sign? :lol:

ToSeek
2004-Mar-06, 08:30 PM
I'm prophetic (http://www.unitedmedia.com/comics/hedge/archive/hedge-20040306.html) (but they can't have her).

Charlie in Dayton
2004-Mar-08, 07:40 AM
- The RAT lead scientist appears to be wearing a tribble on his head...


We now know that Dolly Parton is a strong supporter of space exploration...she donates all her old wigs to NASA.

Maksutov
2004-Mar-08, 08:54 AM
That's not a tribble. But that guy does look like an alien from an episode of Trek, can't remember which one. #-o

I believe that episode was "The Apple" and the particular alien was Akula, the leader of "The Feeders of Vaal". Amazing what certain kinds of lacquer sprays will do.

http://www.stdimension.de/Guide/sttos/tos038.jpg


Akula (http://daisydownunder.com/images/ta11.jpg)


[edited to add link]

Maksutov
2004-Mar-08, 09:22 AM
I'm prophetic (http://www.unitedmedia.com/comics/hedge/archive/hedge-20040306.html) (but they can't have her).

Thanks, ToSeek! Now I know who Catherine Bell is. Very funny cartoon, BTW.

Maksutov
2004-Mar-08, 10:12 AM
[edit]
Humphrey's been branded! (http://marsrovers.jpl.nasa.gov/gallery/press/spirit/20040305a/05-ra-03-humphrey-A061R1_br.jpg)

And he's not even married yet! :wink: :roll: