It seems that the Curiosity rover is doing, the internet hype, the mannequin challenge on Mars. Nothing is less true, there are serious technical issues with the drilling system and NASA is terrified to move the $2.5 billion controllable toy an inch. The future of mission Mars looks bleak.
The drill is located – along with a number of other tools – at the end of the robot arm of Curiosity. When NASA Curiosity wants to use the drill, the drill must be slightly pushed out. The mechanism responsible for this, however, refused service a few days ago. It is still unclear why.
Possibly the brake on the mechanism, did not released. Another option is that the electronic encoder for the mechanism’s motor did not function as expected for unknown reason. Researchers are working to determine the cause of the problem. They therefor include the use of a replica of Curiosity on earth. “We are using our test rover here on Earth to try out these tests before we run them on Mars,” says Curiosity Deputy Project Manager Steven Lee, at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California.
Not The First Time
The vehicle has came into safe mode thrice before — each and every one in 2013. Fortunately, the rover effectually recovered from all incidents and also has presented crucial data regarding Mars.
As outlined by NASA, the Curiosity rover experienced some kind of error on July 2 and went into a precautionary stand down to keep itself “healthy.” Ever since, researchers have been trying to return the Mars rover to its full functionality.
Curiosity is meanwhile not moving an inch: the rover should not drive and not move its robotic arm. NASA is concerned that movements can risk the mission Mars even further that things becomes to difficult to make a diagnosis. So a cloned version of Curiosity is at the moment being studied here on Earth.