Trek to Solander Point - Page 7

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Kye Goodwin

Posts: 1166

Reply: 121

PostPosted: July 19, 2013 10:00 PM 

Bill, I've had a good look at the "schematic" you linked in your 117 and I hate to say it but I think that it includes some substantial inaccuracies. I hate to say it because I've used a lot of Phil Stooke's products over the years and appreciate them. His ground view image is from a much greater distance than images now available. I think that he would now revise that effort. He seems to have made the same mistake that I did. His boundary line for the Meridiani Bench is drawn around the north end of the cape but the part Oppy can see runs along the north-west slope.

I don't want to go up against Phil Stooke but there are just too many details along that boundary running up the slope that check out. Its not where Phil Stooke has drawn it on his HiRise image. its much further south-west (up and right) and even runs off the top edge of the partial HiRise image he has used.

Bill Harris

Posts: 3

Reply: 122

PostPosted: July 19, 2013 11:43 PM 

*smile* that is my schematic. Phil posted an improved, hi-res Oppy image of Solander. Someone mentioned that they couldn't make head nor tails of the Oppy _vs_ HiRISE views, so I annotated his image, added Solander-from-HiRISE image from my base map and cross-annotated that. Phil was just an innocent bystander.

I agree, that was just an Geology 101 Cliff Notes for the masses and can be much improved. Been thinking about it, with the newer and improveder long-baseline imagery dribbling down, there'll be all the pairs for a nice pano of Solander, and I can do Ver 1.1 of the original with more attention to details.

But we've got some wonderful images of site "Charlie Brown" from this leg of the traverse to keep us busy and drooling.

However, if you wish to work up your own interpretation of that data, feel free. I'd like to see it.



Posts: 3465

Reply: 123

PostPosted: July 20, 2013 8:30 AM 

Sol 3371 ( Jul 18, 2013 ) 3D of science target rock in Botany Bay:

Ah. An MI sequence and an APSX is scheduled for today ( sol 3373 ). My guess is still the ridged white flat rock center left - near the whitest patch on the rock.

Meanwhile, Solander Point beckons:

Sol 3366 ( Jul 13, 2013 ) super 3D detail of Solander Point:

Bill Harris

Posts: 3

Reply: 124

PostPosted: July 20, 2013 10:17 AM 

And a nice 3x1 Stereo pan of site "Charlie Brown", with a series of L257's promised. Assembling the grayscale into a pan was fun, but the several interesting rocks cropped out and 3-D'd are astounding.

They are the P2412 images on this page:

I'll leave the stereos to Hort.

Site "Charlie Brown" was a drive-by, and appears to be a shallow, low-energy crater. It was indeed that red spot mentioned in replys 108 and 110.



Posts: 3465

Reply: 125

PostPosted: July 20, 2013 12:35 PM 

Sol 3371 ( Jul 18, 2013 ) panorama ( left eye ) of the crater "Charlie Brown":

with a link to the right eye view.

A look in 3D at 200% using StereoPhoto Maker is recommended. If you don't see a dozen strange rocks you're not looking very hard.


Posts: 3465

Reply: 126

PostPosted: July 20, 2013 9:19 PM 

Sol 3373 (Jul 20, 2013 ) MI closeup of soil press:

Er, what? The soil has the gypsum anomaly?? Really???

Kye Goodwin

Posts: 1166

Reply: 127

PostPosted: July 21, 2013 3:21 AM 

Horton, Thanks for the panorama of Charlie Brown Crater. There are 10 to 15 fairly certain examples of sand tails "behind" rocks in the panorama. Most aren't in the crater. I checked all the pancam and navcam images of the surface of Botany Bay all the way back to Cape York and I couldn't find a single likely sand tail in the lot. There's no shortage of protruding rocks and there are microchannels everywhere that seem to hold the same sort of sand that forms the tails, but for some reason sand tails don't seem to occur anywhere but at Charlie Brown. Hmm?

Thanks also for the super 3D of the view ahead which helps with the topic Bill Harris and I have been chasing.

Bill, re your 122, Its funny now that I didn't notice that the annotation on your schematic was kind of "loose" for Phil Stooke. I've never gotten it together to learn to create and post my own images so I just have to rely on language. I can tell from your schematic (in reply 117) that you need to basically re-register. The most obvious boundary on the slope ahead in Oppy's view is the same as the most obvious boundary running along the WEST SIDE of the cape in the HiRise view. In your schematic you have drawn the boundary in Oppy's view where I think it is, but your corresponding line in the HiRise view is in the wrong location. Get this and everything falls into place. It took me an hour or two.

Granted, looking at Horton's super-3D makes the boundary look more like it runs along the "base" of the cape. It runs along the line of greatest curvature. Still, the surface of the Meridiani sandstone starts to curve upward into the cape long before the boundary is reached. I think that this starts to constrain the possible scenarios that can explain what we see but doesn't prove anything yet. If we get up on that sloped area of bright rock it will be interesting to see how the layering dips.

Bill Harris

Posts: 3

Reply: 128

PostPosted: July 21, 2013 9:42 AM 

"Er, what? The soil has the gypsum anomaly??"

A regolith is derived from the bedrock and it then is modified (weathers) into a soil. The Berry-less soil of the APXS press may well be from the adjacent multi-layered rocks and one source area could possibly be the bowl of Endeavour. At first glance the shapes and the particle size distribution seem a bit scattered, but this might be expected for a new material close to the source, mixed with older, distant material. And, unusually, it has many lighter-toned particles, which implies compositional differences, and which is also reasonable considering the nearby source. And since that source rock may be a wind- or water-transported sedimentary rock, lordy knows what the genesis of this material is.

We'll probably need to wait til LPSC next year to see what the APXS/Mossbauer shows.

So, yes, a look at this soil is appropriate.

If we're lucky, we may even get to see if the Berries are Blue-, New- or Boysen-. As well as an MI peek at the layered rock: the (apparently) fine-grained, thin, resistant, lighter layers and the (apparently) coarse-grained, thicker, erodable, darker layers.

Even if they don't have extra time for stops on this "Fool's Errand" leg of the Traverse, they need to do more "Foreground Quarter-" and "Clast Survey-" level imagery. Those "at our feet" images can give us years of work.



Posts: 3465

Reply: 129

PostPosted: July 21, 2013 11:31 AM 

A search of the Oppy soil images reveals this is the most boring ( uniform )soil ever photographed at Meridiani.

The small particle size and the sloping on the side of the rocks probably means it is wind blown and literally could be from anywhere on the planet.

Why drive a week and several hundred meters off the beaten path for a sample that could be taken anywhere?

Perhaps the Oppy team is competing with the rocknest sample for the most boring ( representative ) soil on the planet?

Anyway, today ( sol 3374 ) is a driving day with a 360 navcam pan centered on az 216 - so I'm guessing it is not a "bump" but a long drive back towards Solander Point - and renders this discussion moot.

Bill Harris

Posts: 3

Reply: 130

PostPosted: July 21, 2013 2:36 PM 

Based on Hazcam ultimate-penultimate labels, it looks like they did a couple of bumps, and then the 360 Navcam pan, so you may may be right about "And awaaay we go"...

Sad. Very sad. Sad


Posts: 3465

Reply: 131

PostPosted: July 22, 2013 8:22 AM 

Sol 3374 (Jul 21, 2013 ) 180 degree panorama looking south in Botany Bay:

with a link to the 180 pan looking north.

The guestimated drive distance was about 50 meters.


Posts: 3465

Reply: 132

PostPosted: July 22, 2013 11:24 AM 

This animation shows the change in the viewing angle of Solander Point from sol 3353 to 3374:

Be sure to read the Flickr comments.


Posts: xxx

Reply: 133

PostPosted: July 22, 2013 1:39 PM 

How about from orbit?


Posts: xxx

Reply: 134

PostPosted: July 22, 2013 1:44 PM 

Come get you some....



Posts: 3465

Reply: 135

PostPosted: July 22, 2013 1:56 PM 

Sol 3369 ( Jul 16, 2013 ) natural color panorama of contact in Botany Bay:

with a link to the enhanced difference false color version.

and here is the sol 3371 ( Jul 18, 2013 ) 3D enhanced difference false color of "Charlie Brown" crater:

Does anyone find the enhanced difference false color version useful in seeing mineral differences?


Posts: 38

Reply: 136

PostPosted: July 22, 2013 2:00 PM 

ah yes..Louros Valles.

can't be sending a rover down there...that just wouldn't do.

wouldn't do at all.

Bill Harris

Posts: 3

Reply: 137

PostPosted: July 23, 2013 5:03 PM 

RE: hort, msg#129
"The small particle size and the sloping on the side of the rocks probably means it is wind blown and literally could be from anywhere on the planet."

No. It's too coarse and poorly-sorted to be a planet-wide aeolian deposit. Think of the infamous Whiterock Formation typified in Pollack Crater, or a terrestrial loess deposit. This stuff is local material wind-transported and deposited in the leeward side of a rock.

"Why drive a week and several hundred meters off the beaten path for a sample that could be taken anywhere?"

It's much worse than that. Much much worse. We spend ten years and umpty-dozen kilometers of roving and Oppy was commanded to trundle by the third major lithologic unit encountered on this Traverse. This is the reddish-brown, laminated unit typified by rocks at the site "Charlie Brown". This rock is characterized by what appears to be fine-grained, thin, resistant, lighter-toned layers interbedded with coarse-grained, thicker, erodable, darker-toned layers. The significance of this unit is that it may represent a cyclic, seasonal, wind and water-borne sedimentary deposit. The area we are traversing may represent the rim rock of the young Endeavour Crater or a variation of the pre-impact basal unit. At any rate, it is different than anything we have observed before. I look at the "Enhanced Difference False Color" treatment that Hort did of the current RGB HiRISE image, and my first thought was "distributary channels" when I saw those red, ropy areas in this area Northeast of Solander.

This unit also represents a third major Martian geologic time unit that we have encountered in the Oppy Traverse. The first (and youngest unit) was the "Meridiani Units" consisting of dry and cold playa deposits with intermittent precipitation and apparently a shallow, highly mineralized groundwater table. Monotonous and never-ending, we were there forever. The next (and oldest unit) was at Cape York, the "Shoemaker Units", consisting of various layers of impactites, ejectites, lapilli of impact and volcanic origin and clays and other weathering byproducts suggesting relatively wet and warm interludes in the landscape of Hades. Whereas the Meridiani is bland and monotonous, the Shoemaker is jumbled and catastrophic. This third unit, which I think of as the "Shultz Units", (after the type exposure "charlie_brown") cyclical and seasonal and may represent a lot of water moving a lot of material over a long time.

And yet, Oppy is commanded to trundle past all and take a few touristy snapsots for the pretty picture album. Sadder than sad.



Posts: xxx

Reply: 138

PostPosted: July 23, 2013 5:48 PM 

Fred; Re your #133. Wow! Great images in your collection.



Posts: xxx

Reply: 139

PostPosted: July 23, 2013 5:50 PM 

Fred; I forgot to ask. Where was the Reply 133 image taken?


Bill Harris

Posts: 3

Reply: 140

PostPosted: July 24, 2013 8:46 AM 

There may be hope afterall. The Sol-3376 drive was just a shot jog of a few meters to another new and unusual rock southish of previous stop:

The FHazcam image shows the new and unusual terrain ahead of us as a dark band in the midground. The new terrain shows up well in HiRISE imagery:

This new target may be named "pancam_Black_Shoulder_L257R2", but who knows-- since leaving Esperance they have listed some 30 named targets, only a few of which have been identified.


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