Chemistry and Camera complex

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The internal spectrometer (left) and the laser telescope (right) for the mast
Msl laser 466x248.gif

Chemistry and Camera complex (ChemCam) is a suite of remote sensing instruments on Mars for the Curiosity rover. As the name implies, ChemCam is actually two different instruments combined as one: a laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS) and a Remote Micro Imager (RMI) telescope. The purpose of the LIBS instrument is to provide elemental compositions of rock and soil, while the RMI will give ChemCam scientists high-resolution images of the sampling areas of the rocks and soil that LIBS targets.[1] The LIBS instrument can target a rock or soil sample from up to 7 m (23 ft) away, vaporizing a small amount of it with about 50 to 75 5-nanosecond pulses from a 1067 nm infrared laser and then observing the spectrum of the light emitted by the vaporized rock.

Overview[edit]

ChemCam has the ability to record up to 6,144 different wavelengths of ultraviolet, visible, and infrared light.[2] Detection of the ball of luminous plasma will be done in the visible, near-UV and near-infrared ranges, between 240 nm and 800 nm.[1] The first initial laser testing of the ChemCam by Curiosity on Mars was performed on a rock, N165 ("Coronation" rock), near Bradbury Landing on August 19, 2012.[3][4][5] The ChemCam team expects to take approximately one dozen compositional measurements of rocks per day.[6]

Using the same collection optics, the RMI provides context images of the LIBS analysis spots. The RMI resolves 1 mm (0.039 in) objects at 10 m (33 ft) distance, and has a field of view covering 20 cm (7.9 in) at that distance.[1] The ChemCam instrument suite was developed by the Los Alamos National Laboratory and the French CESR laboratory.[1][7][8] The flight model of the mast unit was delivered from the French CNES to Los Alamos National Laboratory.[9]

Images[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d "MSL Science Corner: Chemistry & Camera (ChemCam)". NASA/JPL. Retrieved September 9, 2009. 
  2. ^ "Rover's Laser Instrument Zaps First Martian Rock.". 2012. Retrieved 2012-08-20. 
  3. ^ Webster, Guy; Agle, D.C. (August 19, 2012). "Mars Science Laboratory/Curiosity Mission Status Report". NASA. Retrieved September 3, 2012. 
  4. ^ Staff. "'Coronation' Rock on Mars". NASA. Retrieved September 3, 2012. 
  5. ^ Amos, Jonathan (August 17, 2012). "Nasa's Curiosity rover prepares to zap Martian rocks". BBC News. Retrieved September 3, 2012. 
  6. ^ "How Does ChemCam Work?". ChemCam Team. 2011. Retrieved January 12, 2017. 
  7. ^ Salle B.; Lacour J. L.; Mauchien P.; Fichet P.; Maurice S.; Manhes G. (2006). "Comparative study of different methodologies for quantitative rock analysis by Laser-Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy in a simulated Martian atmosphere" (PDF). Spectrochimica Acta Part B-Atomic Spectroscopy. 61 (3): 301–313. Bibcode:2006AcSpe..61..301S. doi:10.1016/j.sab.2006.02.003. 
  8. ^ Wiens R.C.; Maurice S. (2008). "Corrections and Clarifications, News of the Week". Science. 322 (5907): 1466. doi:10.1126/science.322.5907.1466a. 
  9. ^ ChemCam Status April, 2008. Los Alamos National Laboratory.

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