Insight lander - Page 5

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Author Message
Dana Johnson

Posts: 1195

Reply: 81

PostPosted: August 14, 2019 1:51 PM 

Sol 253 images, presented Sol 254,
August 14, 2019

A view at low contrast, 2X enlargement, dpi1647,

A higher contrast view of the shadow zone, also at 2X size if downloaded and viewed, 640 x 480. pixels.

Seems no obstruction of the scoop in the several gestures. Will the hole require to be overfilled to accomplish a compression of the particulates against the metal tube?

The added gesturing has broken the surface into what appears to be small to fine patterns, without large objects.

I made these views larger only to show the disrupted soil from new efforts and to compare the darker distribution of thrown material on the left side beyond the tube.

The smooth item is still visible in the same position in the hole next to the metal hammer device.

Original images, credits; NASA/JPL-Caltech

Dana Johnson

Posts: 1195

Reply: 82

PostPosted: August 15, 2019 3:48 PM 

Some changes in the late issued images of Sol 253 and Sol 254 show in the listing today, Sol 255, Aug 15, 2019.
The enlarged views are at 3X if downloaded, probably about 1X seen on the blog here without clicking the image-links. The DPI is 1647 again, so some blurring happens with lessened pixel interference seen here.
The hole remains unfilled, but is rather roughed up.
The scoop seems to have uncovered what appears to be concreted 3D shapes with brightened rim casings possibly. I don't believe it looks like direct scoop pressuring of the loose materials. Possibly the soil has been altered in sections? Chemistry or physical scuffing of the particulates near the surface? The general disrupted soil is dark. The 'rind' irregular shapes appear bright and of uniform thickness. Is that the actual soil condition? Those patterns are just below the background action limit, and are surrounded by dark loose material. I can mark them if requested.
These images are 'catch up' inclusions in the prior days pictures. We are being given images over several days timing. No statement as to how many are not sent to the lists at all.

Sol 253

Sol 254

Original image credits,

Dana Johnson

Posts: 1195

Reply: 83

PostPosted: August 17, 2019 5:25 PM 

Interesting that images for Sol 254 are being uploaded or released on the site, on Sol 257, August 17, 2019. The Sol 253 image presented here is an enlarged view when downloaded, and is beginning to break down some at just 2X without much alteration. The cropped image section was 560x400, to include the roughed soil surface area. The DPI was 1647, at 2X size, for 1120x800 finish size.
The first view is at 'gamma' 2.1 setting showing what now appears a two flat bright sections of a single layer or broken item, not looking as pieces of the surface material but rather solid objects I did not see prior. Am I wrong about the unusually bright items? Would pressed particulates appear to be oriented in a single layer and would they be as bright as seen if they were at the bottom of the hole?
The second view is at normal brightness and contrast but at the 2X settings, same finish size.

These are images I have just downloaded, and I may have missed early this week.

How many mysteries can be found in one small shovel load of regolith/soil?

Waiting for new work to be displayed.

I imagine at some point they would probably test the heater effects in the hole after filling in, and it appears they are pressing the surface with some pressure applied now.

Dana Johnson

Posts: 1195

Reply: 84

PostPosted: August 18, 2019 3:02 PM 

Images of Sol 257 are available, but no view of the bright reflective slab section on the wall from this angle and lighting in the final image listed. The section here is a 500 x 400 crop view at normal settings. That makes it less than a 1 to 1 size in the thumbnails.
The impression is that the hammer tube appears further into the soil than prior days images show. Could just be the angle of incidence.

This second image is a 3X enlarged and further cropped view of the hole remaining. The setting change is 'gamma' of 3 leaving just a few tones in the darkest shadows. Colors are distorted by the change. DPI is 1647, size of the crop is 280 x 200 prior to enlargement to 840 x 600 when downloaded. The view should be about 1 to 1 in the thumbnail image.
No view of the bright thin slab item, but the several dark rounded small objects in the far right of the shadow area, and a small slide of loose material has collapsed the wall at the near right. Filling the hole seems loose but successful thus far. Can this type of material be compressed sufficiently to make a friction hold on the upper end of the metal tube with a couple inches exposed?
Could the scoop be effective after repeated compression attempts?

Original image source link,

Image credits, originals;

An interesting last note today, in the foreground of the hole on the exposed surface, there is a angular rock broken across the shaded left rock face, and along the long axis of the shading is a near matching set of thin bright items parallel to the soil surface. Surely the broken rock is not related to the bright similar shaped items in the hole seen in the Sol 253 image? Brightness or reflectivity seems a little different.

Dana Johnson

Posts: 1195

Reply: 85

PostPosted: August 18, 2019 3:57 PM 

I suspect most will never see the bright section in the small rock if it is not posted, so here is the added view of the near matching items. This related to the bright items in reply #83 at the bottom of the hole far wall. Perhaps this process is common on Mars, but it is possible the two objects were related prior to the InSIGHT landing, or during the excavation of the hole during hammering. Something to study while the hole is filled.
The setting of the altered section is 'levels' 115 to 220, with a 'canvas' section added to the bottom as the image host posts text over the images in the second linked largest view. Download for the best viewing.
At the upper section of the far hole inner wall there are still brighter areas which appear to be 'rind' zones of altered material which seems to have been below the surface possibly prior to the excavation process.
Active soil chemistry, radiation, or original infilling of the area during deposition long past?

Dana Johnson

Posts: 1195

Reply: 86

PostPosted: August 18, 2019 10:17 PM 

After some looking at the 3X view of these Sol 257 images, the grapple looks like a very 'pebbly' surface. Is it possible for ice to form on a metal at this temperature and low pressure?

Dana Johnson

Posts: 1195

Reply: 87

PostPosted: August 19, 2019 11:46 AM 

I can see to reply # 83 today, but none of the entries after that timing. Based on that and memory, The suggestion that the team is entering into an investigation of the regolith/soil and hammer mechanism interaction probably would indicate the SEIS recording and analysis is underway first during the extensive timing delays of the IDA scoop movements on the surface during periodic infilling and particulate movements.
There are slopes now being created, smoothing of the disrupted surface caused by the scoop lip digging, and dragging of the flat scoop face across the disrupted materials.
Testing the sensitivity of the SEIS mechanism would be important ongoing information as a base for future near and distant activity recordings.

Work describing the technical aspects of the arm and SEIS machinery planned investigation of the surface details, similar to the observed events in the recent weeks returned images.

The teams seem to be taking a slow approach to the use of the equipment while measuring the minor activities as an opportunity to tune the various instruments for future work.
They seem to be progressing to the section 5.6 in the use of the arm and scoop for detail work.

Hopefully they can estimate the amount of formation and reformation of local near surface materials based upon the view and instruments.
Have the minor units formed along the near vertical walls shown altered states after assembly by whatever mechanism deposited the loose materials? Is the surface a type that would allow a 5 meter hammering penetration or not?

Additional similar publications with related reference information about the preparation and planned work. Reference numbers are differing for each publication by topic and content.


The pebble surface texture of the grapple fingers would aid considerably in reducing adhesion if ice were suspected of interferring with pressured contact to the soil or objects, but I imagine there is a anti-static or other coating applied to the metal outer surfaces for a reason. Something to investigate while the IDA 'arm' is used in close quarters with the soil and extreme weather objects on Mars.

John Radogno

Posts: 37

Reply: 88

PostPosted: August 19, 2019 12:18 PM 

That could be condensation. Do you know what time of day the image was taken?

Dana Johnson

Posts: 1195

Reply: 89

PostPosted: August 20, 2019 11:02 AM 

Today I can see post #86, and no further. This continues the posting of possible water ice or other surface transparent chemistry on the grapple fingers of the IDA. I have reviewed a few early images for similar surface textures and will have to cover the several months for a study of the topic.

The landing released considerable retro-rocket chemistry, as with the similar problem seen on the Phoenix lander, and the arguments are somewhat similar except for weather and latitude/altitude differences. Inherent ice content just below the surface or weather front altered conditions may be controlling the comparison of the two situations.

A view of the grapple device fingers upon the landing, Sol 1, versus the view of Sol 257, months later. Lighting is different, and weather has altered the scene.
The view is at 3X in the smaller image, and enlarged in the larger view to 6X for downloading viewing at the full 6X size. I am sure now this is a real process, certainly noticed by many who watch these images on large screens. As I use a small laptop for this work currently, I see only the textures after enlarging images.

1600 x 1200, 6X, of original,

840 x 600, 3X, of original,

Only a download of the images shows the full sized view available.

A view of the InSIGHT lander deck, apparently sprayed with fuel from thrusters either as a liquid or a gas, then condensed, unless another source of ice can be surmised from the landing spot.
The view is altered and enlarged from the original to 3X here, Sol 12 of the mission. Could the bright material be a spray other than ice from below?

I can present the originals as links, but the file names on the image host contain both the file name, dates, and the alterations I have made from original conditions. I will discuss this while watching for further work on the mole device.

Is there inherent sufficient ice to present the views or is this a remnant of the landing event? Is the subsurface an active differing weather product of the Mars climate?

Dana Johnson

Posts: 1195

Reply: 90

PostPosted: August 20, 2019 12:43 PM 

I will leave one additional challenge for today, from Sol 8, in the interpretation of possible ice on grapple fingers. These images show enlarged views of the fingers after one week on Mars. The enlargements also show a large amount of the 'pixel noise' as texture, so the viewing is always suspect from both perspectives. Does the finger surface and material have a quality causing ice accumulation even in varied times and sunlight angles? Is the entire concept impossible? Does the image show the limits of alteration and interpretation of textures?
After spending years watching materials and surfaces respond differently on Earth to the temperature and humidity fluctuations I can't decide how to look at this. It is possible that both noise and ice could be present and viewed as a combination.
Even looking into a dark shadow can produce distortions severely.

Sol 8, enlarged to 3X and altered. Texture seemingly both surface texture and pixel noise.

We have discussed sublimation in general, but can a liquid or a condensed/converted gas now ice be self confining and preserved over long periods of timing on Mars?

Original image link, Sol 8,

Original image credits; NASA/JPL-Caltech

Dana Johnson

Posts: 1195

Reply: 91

PostPosted: August 20, 2019 3:08 PM 

John, referencing your post of #88, the timing of the images was 5:02 PM on Mars, yet we are looking at from freezing to -90F and lower, so any ice on a metal or plastic would be as solid as could be imagined, barring radiation sublimation alteration. The problem is that the pressure and sunlight should both be working against a solid ice according to routine explanations. I see this texture at 2X enlargement easily, and it is viewed at 1 to 1 as well with careful detailed looking.
The timing of various images showing textures appearing as thick transparent ice is from varied timing, so that makes me suspect the particular items are causing the textural surface whatever the cause. I don't see much other surface effect on other materials.
I do not see the effect on the Sol 1 day after the landing for these grapple fingers. The change has occurred after the landing and deployment began apparently.

If the detailed views show the matching texture at small scale doesn't change in subsequent weeks it should be a coating or other solid, not ice, I would estimate. Surely ice cannot exist continuously on the fingers.
Unusual items to look at on the surface of both the large rock near the lander and the smaller rock along the far left upper portion of the IDA. Both show large semi-solid textures and open vesicles from degassing. Some of the larger rock surface is bright but not as bright as the small flat layer content I showed in the hole exposure and inside the shadowed side of the very small rock shown in the altered Sol 257 enlargements.
I jumped from one Sol 257 image to another working on the images and was confused about the timing, so I'll look again to see if I made a file number mistake somewhere.
I began using this laptop with Win 10, and have found a few glitches in files and automated processes to work out.
I am going to attempt to upload a full frame view of one of the Sol 257 views so all textures can be viewed along with the larger rocks in the scene. I assume you can access all my images as I can by using the left and right sequence buttons when looking at the hosting links. If you cannot, I'll display images differently in the future.

One of the images,

The other image, both show similar textures at differing distance,

The last image here was 4:33 PM, similar to the 5 PM timing of the first.
The mystery is why no texture on the fingers of Sol 1 if this is not ice.

Two added views, one full frame fingers altered area, and the last is a crop with yet another alteration view of the fingers with lighted bright raised adhering 'drops' all over the finger ends, and length, both at 3X if downloaded.

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