Liam and Suzan were joined by Eric for the official Maiden Voyage of the Planetary Lake Lander. Although the floating pontoon and
meteorological station did ride out last winter on the lake, today was the first time that the complete lander, featuring the software and components to complete the mission, navigated on the lake.
Liam drove the lander, powered by an electric motor, from the rocky beach where they had been working for the last week assembling it, and moored it at the temporary mooring location not far off shore from the Base Camp Landing.
“It’s actually kind of beautiful” said team Roboticist Susan Lee.
This will make work slightly easier, because the place where the team was assembling the PLL was over a Kilometer away and required travelling boat with all the tools back and forth. The new mooring location is closer, but it might require more care to work on the floating platform in the lake. But the team say they are up to the challenge.
Today also marked the first day of Bathymetric and Thermal surveying of the lake, with Eric covering several kilometers in the zodiac in survey mode.