The Curiosity rover of NASA is still working on making new discoveries on the red planet. Since 2014, the rover is climbing Mount Sharp and it has recently touched a clay region that could give new signs on the ancient Martian environment’s possibilities to support life.
Recently, Curiosity faced a problem, when a delay at the time of its boot-up has disturbed its scheduled activities and activated a protective safe mode. On Tuesday, Feb. 19, Curiosity rover was taken out of its protective safe mode. The whole weekend, the rover was communicating with the team by sending and receiving technical data in order to assist them to find the root cause of the problem.
As per Steven Lee, Curiosity’s deputy project manager, the team is still not sure of the exact cause of the problem and the team is currently collecting the appropriate data for their analysis. The mission is led by JPL. Lee added that the rover has faced a one-time computer reset but has functioned as expected ever since and this is a good indication. As per Lee, the team is working to take a snapshot of the rover’s memory so that they can understand the issue in a better way. Lee further added that all the science operations will stay on hold until the researchers understand the issue.
The team is restricting commands to the Curiosity rover to reduce the changes to its memory. Lee added that the team doesn’t want to lose any mark of what might have triggered the reset of the computer. So, we can expect the science operations to be suspended for a while. NASA’s Curiosity rover is among the two spacecraft that is keenly studying the surface of Mars. Curiosity rover is designed precisely to study the ancient environments of the red planet that possibly have supported life.