Mars Rover Suffers Instrument Glitch

NASA said Tuesday it has suspended use of one of the mineral-identifying tools on the Opportunity Mars rover due to a problem. The robots thermal emission spectrometer was acting up, and engineers are obtaining data from it while troubleshooting. The problem might be related to a malfunctioning optical switch that tells a mirror in the instrument when to begin moving. Or the mirror might not be properly moving at a constant velocity.