Free Spirit

Free SpiritNASA’s Mars Exploration Rover website has a new Free Spirit page tracking the efforts to get Spirit “unstuck” from its sand trap.

Engineers are mixing diatomaceous Earth and clay in the on-earth rover testbed to attempt to recreate conditions similar to the ones in which Spirit has gotten stuck on Mars so that a sequence of commands can be developed to safety drive the rover out of the mess it’s gotten itself into.

Spirit used it’s microscopic imager (which was not designed for anything other than close-up images) to take this fuzzy sequence of pictures under itself that show the wheels dug deeply into the sandy soil, and an ominous pointy rock poking up toward it’s belly

view of Spirit's underbelly

Posted on June 25, 2009
Filed Under Mars, Space | 3 Comments


3 Responses to “Free Spirit”

  1. Dawn on October 22nd, 2011 4:53 am

    I was browsing through blogs and noticed you referred to yourself as a geek. I had to laugh. I refer to my husband as “my little geek’ (affectionately I must add).

    I have an amusing story regarding my then 2 ½ yr old grandson that I would like to share with you. The boy was watching a television show on the Mars Lander and the Mars Rovers. He seemed enthralled with the whole thing…until Spirit got stuck! He was quite distressed. He had a solution. In his little mind the Mars Lander is the Mars Rovers mom. If someone would tell “The Mom” that Spirit was stuck he was sure that The Mom would go save Spirit. How cute is that!

  2. Craig on October 24th, 2011 11:32 am

    That’s a great story! For some reason, kids seem to drawn to the Mars rovers, but mostly as “robots” -your grandson’s interpretation of the Mars Phoenix Lander as “The Mom” is really unique (and adorable!). Your comment has really gotten me thinking, and you should see a new post on this topic.

    By the way, a grandmother watching television shows about the Mars rovers with her grandson just might qualify you as a geek too…

  3. Kids and Rovers : craigLog on October 24th, 2011 8:07 pm

    […] recent comment from a reader about her 2-1/2 year old grandson’s reaction to watching a National Geographic […]

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