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Posted by on Aug 20, 2012 in Technology |

Curiosity ChemCam test on the first rock on Mars

Curiosity ChemCam test on the first rock on Mars

Every little step she takes on is being studied and replicated by all means. His arrival to Mars has begun with the first photographs and commissioning of all machinery. For several hours we reached the turn of the ChemCam. A test run of powerful laser before starting your first mission.

He did this by spraying a small rock the size of a fist, called Coronation. According to NASA, Curiosity was “confronted” the rock N165 firing the laser up to 30 times over a period of 10 seconds. These data indicate that the laser was able to throw more than 1 million watts of power for 5,000 millionths of a second.

And for what? This first test of the laser was focused to check its operation. The laser heated the rock to the point where its molecules started to turn into a fireball, at which point the telescope and spectrometers equipped Curiosity (capacity to record in 6,144 different wavelengths of ultraviolet light) began analyzing the compounds of the rock.

Curiosity ChemCam test on the first rock on Mars image 2

Those 10-second bursts of gunfire also help scientists to analyze whether there were changes in the composition of the rock during the laser activity.

In short, a first test of an instrument, the ChemCam, that after 8 eights work is finally beginning to bear fruit. This is just confirming Sylvestre Maurice, one of the principal investigators after ChemCam:

Surprising that the data we received are even better than we had previously obtained in tests on Earth. The can offer great scientific discoveries in the next two years on Mars.

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