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Fraser
2008-Jun-02, 12:40 PM
Phoenix's first dig in the Martian soil. Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/ University of ArizonaThe Phoenix lander used its robotic arm scoop to dig up soil on Mars surface for the first time during its activities during its seventh day on the Red Planet. The image above shows the hole dug by Phoenix, and [...]

More... (http://www.universetoday.com/2008/06/02/phoenix-digs-on-marst/)

antoniseb
2008-Jun-02, 01:54 PM
It's hopeful news that they think they can get TEGA working.
The first scoop didn't seem to reveal much. The earlier shot seemed to reveal a bedrock of water-ice. It would be cool if that were really there, but I wonder whether the RAS can dig into that and collect any.

Ross PK81
2008-Jun-02, 02:09 PM
So the TEGA is suffering from an 'intermittent' (temporary) short circuit. How could a short circuit be temporary? How can it just go right on it's own?

01101001
2008-Jun-02, 02:40 PM
How could a short circuit be temporary? How can it just go right on it's own?

A loose piece of some conductor that is and isn't in contact with the circuit, perhaps vibration-based? A wire that touches some grounded part? That's pure speculation. I've seen shorts like that. "Just whack it!"

As for one potential workaround, I thought I heard in a briefing that the ion source has two such circuits and only one is affected, and they can get by with just one. I don't know what else they might have up their sleeves, but it sounds like they have a few things to try.