The Rover Environmental Monitoring Station is nicknamed REMS, and it contains all the weather instruments needed to provide daily and seasonal reports on meteorological conditions around the rover.
|Main Job||Weather station to measure atmospheric pressure, temperature, humidity, winds, plus ultraviolet radiation levels.|
|Location||Two "bolt-like" booms on the rover's mast ("neck") that measure wind, ground temperature and humidity UV sensor on the rover deck ("back") about 1.5 meters above ground level pressure sensor inside the rover body and connected to the external atmosphere via a tube that exits the rover body through a small opening with protection against dust deposition.|
|Capability||Designed to survive a -130 °C to +70 °C temperature range and minimize power consumption for operation.|
|Measurements||Autonomously record at least 5 minutes of data at 1 Hz each hour, every sol (Martian day), for all sensors (i.e., total baseline of two hours per sol); maximum of three hours of operation per sol allows a continuous block of monitoring time if desired.|
The Centro de Astrobiologia (CAB), a joint center of Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Cientificas - Instituto Nacional de Tecnica Aeroespacial (CSIC-INTA), is providing a weather monitoring station contributed by the Spanish government and to be carried by the Mars Science Laboratory rover.
The Rover Environmental Monitoring Station will measure and provide daily and seasonal reports on atmospheric pressure, humidity, ultraviolet radiation at the Martian surface, wind speed and direction, air temperature, and ground temperature around the rover.
Two small booms on the rover mast will record the horizontal and vertical components of wind speed to characterize air flow near the Martian surface from breezes, dust devils, and dust storms. A sensor inside the rover's electronic box will be exposed to the atmosphere through a small opening and will measure changes in pressure caused by different meteorological events such as dust devils, atmospheric tides, and cold and warm fronts. A small filter will shield the sensor against dust contamination.
A suite of infrared sensors on one of the booms (Boom 1) will measure the intensity of infrared radiation emitted by the ground, which will provide an estimate of ground temperature. These data will provide the basis for computing ground temperature. A sensor on the other boom (Boom 2) will track atmospheric humidity. Both booms will carry sensors for measuring air temperature.
An array of detectors on the rover deck that are sensitive to specific frequencies of sunlight will measure ultraviolet radiation at the Martian surface and correlate it with changes in the other environmental variables.