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Curiosity Rover Sends Back First 3D Images Of Mars 

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Old 08-08-2012, 08:06 AM
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Curiosity Rover Sends Back First 3D Images Of Mars

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The Curiosity rover today sent back the first 3D images of the martian surface as Mission controllers began testing out its camera systems.
The rover also sent back the first 'clear' pictures of its new home in the Gale crater after a dust cover was successfully jettisoned from one of its main cameras.
Nasa also today released new images of the surface of the red planet showing the rover and the discarded landing casing and parachute on the red planet's surface.

The first 3D images from Nasa's Curiosity rover have been beamed back to earth, revealing the lander's wheel and its shadow cast on the martian surface.The image was made from a stereo pair of Hazard-Avoidance Cameras on the front of the rover:


It is the first of dozens of images set to be released over the coming days as Nasa begins testing out the scientific instruments that will let the car sized rover search for the ingredients of life.
Nasa has also revealed amazing new images from the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera aboard NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, which captured the Curiosity rover and the components that helped it survive its seven-minute ordeal from space to its present location in Mars' Gale Crater.

cientists have begun activating Curiosity's 17 different cameras. These stunning 3D images show the rover's landing site, with its wheel and body clearly visible in the bottom right:


'This latest image is another demonstration of the invaluable assistance the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter team, and its sister team with the Mars Odyssey orbiter, have provided the Curiosity rover during our early days on the Red Planet,' said Mike Watkins, mission manager for the Mars Science Laboratory mission at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena.
'The image not only satisfies our curiosity, it can provide important information on how these vital components performed during entry, descent and landing, and exactly locate the rover's touchdown site within Gale Crater.'

In the image (below) the Curiosity rover is in the center of the image.
To the right, approximately 4,900 feet (1,500 meters) away, lies the heat shield, which protected the rover from 3,800-degree-Fahrenheit (about 2,100 degrees Celsius) temperatures encountered during its fiery descent.
On the lower left, about 2,020 feet (615 meters) away, are the parachute and back shell.
The parachute has a constructed diameter of 71 feet (almost 21.5 meters) and an inflated diameter of 51 feet (nearly 16 meters).
The back shell remains connected to the chute via 80 suspension lines that are 165 feet (50 meters) long.
To the upper-left, approximately 2,100 feet (650 meters) away from the rover, is a discoloration of the Mars surface consistent with what would have resulted when the rocket-powered Sky Crane impacted the surface.



'This is the first of what I imagine will be many portraits HiRISE will be taking of Curiosity on the surface of Mars," said Sarah Milkovich, HiRISE investigation scientist at JPL.
'The image was taken Monday at about 10:30 p.m. Pacific when MRO was at an altitude of about 186 miles (300 kilometers), and we are getting resolution on the surface down to 1.3 feet (39 centimeters) per pixel.'
As more of Curiosity's instruments are coming online, more "first images" are being downlinked from the rover's 17 cameras.
The latest to come in is from the Mars Hand Lens Imager or MAHLI.
The focusable color camera is located on the tool-bearing turret at the end of Curiosity's robotic arm. Researchers will use it for magnified, close-up views of rocks and soils and also for wider scenes of the ground, the landscape or even the rover.
'It is great to have our first MAHLI image under our belt,' said Ken Edgett, principal investigator for MAHLI from Malin Space Science Systems in San Diego.
'We tested the focus mechanism and imager and the whole system is looking good.
'We are looking forward to getting up close and personal with Mars.'
Curiosity's journey to Mars spanned eight months and 352 million miles (566 million kilometers). The rover gently touched down Sunday night after executing an elaborate and untested landing routine. The size of a compact car, it was too heavy to land using air bags. Instead, it relied on a heat shield, parachute, rockets and cables to lower it to the ground.

The nuclear-powered, six-wheel Curiosity will spend the next two years chiseling into rocks and scooping up soil at Gale Crater to determine whether the environment ever had the right conditions for microbes to thrive.
It will spend a chunk of its time driving to Mount Sharp where images from space reveal signs of past water on the lower flanks.

A view through a Hazard-Avoidance camera on NASA's Curiosity rover before and after the clear dust cover was removed. Both images were taken by a camera at the front of the rover:


However, it will be several weeks before it takes its first drive and flexes its robotic arm.
Since landing, engineers have been busy performing health checkups on its systems and instruments.
Over the next several days, it was poised to send back crisper pictures of its surroundings including a panorama.
The rover was "still in great shape," mission manager Michael Watkins said

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Old 08-08-2012, 11:21 AM
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Re: Curiosity Rover Sends Back First 3D Images Of Mars


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Old 08-08-2012, 11:41 AM
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Re: Curiosity Rover Sends Back First 3D Images Of Mars

A friend was saying last night he heard it takes something like 13 minutes for the signal to reach the rover. So when they tell it to drive forward they have to sit and wait 13 minutes until it does it?

I cant really see that being true

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Old 08-08-2012, 02:41 PM
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Re: Curiosity Rover Sends Back First 3D Images Of Mars

It all looks pretty boring and empty where they are now, so I guess they'll just drive along until they find something of interest?

I'd imagine they'll move the rover a few metres, then wait until they get some pics back, then move it a bit more until they get familiar with how it responds and all that.

Interesting though, especially if some insect, or mahoosive footprint appears in the screen....

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Old 08-08-2012, 09:04 PM
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Re: Curiosity Rover Sends Back First 3D Images Of Mars

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Originally Posted by King Herald View Post
It all looks pretty boring and empty where they are now, so I guess they'll just drive along until they find something of interest?

I'd imagine they'll move the rover a few metres, then wait until they get some pics back, then move it a bit more until they get familiar with how it responds and all that.

Interesting though, especially if some insect, or mahoosive footprint appears in the screen....
Would be so cool to see something interesting like a creature of some sort!

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Old 08-09-2012, 05:22 AM
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Re: Curiosity Rover Sends Back First 3D Images Of Mars

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Originally Posted by Parannoyed View Post
A friend was saying last night he heard it takes something like 13 minutes for the signal to reach the rover. So when they tell it to drive forward they have to sit and wait 13 minutes until it does it?

I cant really see that being true
It would actually be longer because they have to wait for a response.

You're talking about something being between 100 to 200 million miles away. Radio delay is between 9-18 minutes each way. The rovers can communicate directly to earth for no more than 3 hours per day due power use. The rovers also communicate with orbiters for 8 minutes at a time then they can communicate with Earth for up to 16 hours per day. To send a couple large pictures can take hours before they are received.

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Old 08-09-2012, 06:37 AM
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Re: Curiosity Rover Sends Back First 3D Images Of Mars

Cool pictures

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Old 08-09-2012, 06:41 AM
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Old 08-09-2012, 02:16 PM
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Re: Curiosity Rover Sends Back First 3D Images Of Mars

3D camrea?

Jesus, not even the Martians can escape Avatar!

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Old 08-11-2012, 12:11 PM
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Re: Curiosity Rover Sends Back First 3D Images Of Mars


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