"Mazatzal" Rock on Crater Rim

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PostPosted: March 22, 2004 6:03 PM 

NASA's Spirit took this navigation camera image of the 2-meter-wide (6.6-foot-wide) rock called "Mazatzal" on sol 76, March 21, 2004. Scientists intend to aggressively analyze this target with Spirit's microscopic imager, Mössbauer spectrometer and alpha particle X-ray spectrometer before brushing and "digging in" with the rock abrasion tool on upcoming sols Mazatzal stood out to scientists because of its large size, light tone and sugary surface texture. It is the largest rock the team has seen at the rim of the crater informally named "Bonneville." It is lighter-toned than previous rock targets Adirondack and Humphrey. Its scalloped pattern may be a result of wind sculpting, a very slow process in which wind-transported silt and sand abrade the rock’s surface, creating depressions. This leads scientists to believe that Mazatzal may have been exposed to the wind in this location for an extremely long time. The name "Mazatzal" comes from a mountain range and rock formation that was deposited around 1.2 billion years ago in the Four Peaks area of Arizona.

Image credit: NASA/JPL


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PostPosted: March 22, 2004 11:10 PM 

Is it my imagination or is there a indentation were the dune meets the big rock? Could this be wind weathering with sand?

I read that Spirit might not spend alot of time at Bonneville and will soon head for the shorlines on the hills 3or 4 Km away (or die trying).


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PostPosted: March 23, 2004 9:28 PM 

sand and wind do that type of sculpting in the deserts, on the faces angled so the particles do not immediately lose speed and force-a glancing blow that continues across the face as a stone skipping water. A direct hit takes the momentum out of the particles. The left face also is angled upward which reduces the friction, forcing particles into the air, whereas the speed and force of a particle is amplified when it strikes an overhang as at the right side of Mazatzal, providing the wind pattern is from the camera toward the rock. I see some drift 'tails' headed that way in front and they curve to the right as they approach the rock. They are just in front of the camera.
Each particle can then strike many blows on the right side. Actually the way the lava breaks makes it difficult to quess about shape.
To bad this crater didn't provide better bedrock variety. The entire mission is very productive.


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PostPosted: March 24, 2004 12:44 PM 

Can "Mazatzal" be seen in the color pan of Bonniville"? I think the large black rock behind the rover can be seen in the color pan.


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PostPosted: March 26, 2004 8:23 AM 

timewstr, Spirit arrived "Mazatzal" at sol 77 and in the color pan of Bonneville is the tall black rock (stone) behind Spirit visible, it to point at the spot where Mazatzal lies.

First have a look at an image from sol 75 (Mazatzal and the black stone are visible together)

The same tall black stone can be seen here on sol 77 (together with Spirit's track from "Serpent" drift)


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PostPosted: March 27, 2004 10:15 AM 

Sorry, I forgot to describe the spot of the black stone in the color pan of Bonneville. That's even easy if one knows the name of Columbia Hills. The black stone lies exactly in the direction where the right flank of Mc Cool Hill begins and its flat mountain summit ends.


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PostPosted: March 27, 2004 9:48 PM 

Bueno.. muestren todas las fotos, sera mejor asi.. la verdad..

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