US space agency NASA’s Curiosity Mars Rover is likely to resume its arm movements this week.
The American space agency said that they are currently continuing the analysis of the so-called ‘intermittent electrical short circuit’ in the drill.
During the 911th Martian day of the mission, a fluctuation was reported in the current that triggered a fault-protection response, leading to immediate halt of the action by the Curiosity rover.
The ground team behind the rover mission on Earth has been since February 27 avoiding driving Curiosity or moving its arm. The main focus of the NASA engineers is on the diagnostic tests.
The astronomers are also carrying scientific observations with the help of advanced instruments on the mast of Curiosity rover. NASA’s weather station is also doing environmental monitoring of the rover.
Jim Erickson, Curiosity project manager of NASA’s California-based Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), said, “This week’s diagnostic testing has been productive in narrowing down the possible sources of the transient short circuit. The most likely cause is an intermittent short in the percussion mechanism of the drill. After further analysis to confirm that diagnosis, we will be studying how to adjust for that in future drilling.”
The sample-collection drill on the robotic arm of Curiosity utilizes both hammering, or percussion, and rotation for penetrating into Martian rocks and gather pulverised rock material for the delivery to analytical instruments inside the Mars rover.
According to NASA, the electrical short circuit took place at the time when rover was shifting the sample of rock-powder from the drill’s grooves into a mechanism that sieves as well as portions the powder.
The team behind the project said that Curiosity will be resuming the climb on Mount Sharp on the Red Planet once the issue is fixed.
The American space agency is using Curiosity in order to explore the ancient habitable environments as well as find possibility of life on the Martian environment.