April 5, 2003
Salar Grande, Atacama Desert, Chile
- Obtain supplies and equipment in Iquique
- Receive Hyperion and Cargo
- Scout sites for solar and rover experiments
- Obtained the supplies overlooked on the first trip and departed
- Met cargo at the Iquique airport and guided the cargo truck to the
end of the paved road in Salar Grande where we unloaded 9 yellow crates
(900kg) of equipment. Hyperion weighs only 150kg so the rest is the
solar/weather station, spares, and support equipment, and 9 heavy
wooden crates. Moving this equipment to the site of our base camp will
be a challenge.
- Scouted eastern salar for sites suitable for rover experiments. The
western side of the salar holds sites of particular scientific interest
to biology and geology in a narrow band (<500m) between the salt beds
and the coastal range. However to conduct long-distance traverses in
preparation for upcoming field experiments and to present the rover
with diverse obstacles additional experimental sites will be needed. A
preliminary trip to the eastern side of the salar found potential sites
and confirmed VHF radio communication at 18.2km.
- Noted wind in the western salar is continual from noon until after
dusk peaking in mid-afternoon at 40kph. Wind seemed to diminished in
the eastern salar.
- Established temporary camp at the location where cargo was delivered.
- Noted dew developing after dusk. Exposed surfaces were damp and by
morning noticeable moisture was present.
- Locate sites for solar and rover experiments
[Weather station not yet online]
Afternoon: Hazy, 20C, Winds 20-40kph.
Evening: Hazy, 15C, Winds 10-20kph.
Night: Clear, 5C, Winds 10kph (ending at 2:00am)
of the Day
[Quote of the day could not be translated]