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Tue Aug 7, 2012, 07:09 AM

 

The Photo-Geek’s Guide to Curiosity Rover’s 17 Cameras

By Adam Mann
August 7, 2012
6:30 am




After the probe’s safe landing, it sent several pictures of its wheels on the ground to mission control to let engineers know that everything was okay. But these dusty, close-up images cannot compare to the snapshots that the rover will soon be taking.

Curiosity is packed with no fewer than 17 cameras to shoot high-quality photos and videos in black-and-white, color, and 3-D stereo of the Martian landscape. While scientists are no doubt quite eager for the information that these images will contain, most of us will be excited to live vicariously through the rover and experience some breathtaking views on Mars.

First up is the Mars Decent Imager (MARDI), which recently beamed back an amazing video of the rover’s nail-biting descent. MARDI turned on during the final few minutes of the “Seven Minutes of Terror” and recorded a full-color high-definition movie as the ground rushed up to meet the rover. With this film (and the coming high-def version), you get to experience what the wild ride down to the surface looked like.

MARDI is a 2-megapixel wide-angle camera mounted toward the front on the port side of Curiosity. The camera came to life just after the spacecraft’s heat shield jettisoned, taking images of a roughly 2 by 2.5-mile square, with a resolution of about 8 feet per pixel. The final fully-in-focus images came when the rover was about 15 feet off the ground. In addition to a thrilling film, MARDI will provide scientists the opportunity to know exactly where Curiosity landed and learn a bit about the surrounding area.

http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2012/08/curiosity-mars-rover-cameras/

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Reply The Photo-Geek’s Guide to Curiosity Rover’s 17 Cameras (Original post)
HarveyDarkey Aug 2012 OP
eppur_se_muova Aug 2012 #1
krispos42 Aug 2012 #2
FailureToCommunicate Aug 2012 #3

Response to HarveyDarkey (Original post)

Tue Aug 7, 2012, 01:14 PM

1. I think we could all use a Decent Imager ...

but I'm sure NASA wanted a Descent Imager.

NASA has already release a thumbnail view of that video, but you can't see much in it -- res too low.

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Response to eppur_se_muova (Reply #1)

Tue Aug 7, 2012, 08:25 PM

2. They're working feverishly on the Apollo moon-landing soundstage...

...to fabricate the high-res video.

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Response to HarveyDarkey (Original post)

Tue Aug 7, 2012, 09:26 PM

3. Holy Rover-razzi Batman!

That's a lot of cameras!

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