The High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera detailed the entire 800-meter (roughly half-mile) Victoria crater and the rover -- down to its rover tracks and shadows -- in a single high-resolution image taken Wednesday (Oct. 3).
Victoria Crater, October 3rd, 2006 as seen by the
High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE)
Alfred S. McEwen of the University of Arizona Lunar and Planetary Laboratory released portions of the image that show views of the rover and crater at a NASA press conference in Washington, D.C., today. McEwen is principal investigator for HiRISE, which is operated from UA's Lunar and Planetary Laboratory in Tucson.
"We're poised to have a fantastic mission, and we're not even at prime science mission yet," McEwen said at the NASA press briefing this morning. "This was our very first attempt to image 'off-nadir' (at an angle as opposed to straight down), and it worked fabulously well," McEwen added. "It's been an exciting week."
The HiRISE images for Victoria crater are available online at http://hiroc.lpl.arizona.edu/images/TRA/TRA_000873_1780/
Opportunity drove nine kilometers (more than five miles) to Victoria crater, an impact crater at Meridiani Planum, near Mars' equator. The HiRISE camera took its picture five days later, at 3:30 p.m. local Mars time, as the sun was about 30 degrees above the horizon, illuminating the scene from the west. The NASA orbiter was flying 297 kilometers (185.6 miles) above the planet's surface. The HiRise camera is able to resolve objects that are 89 centimeters (35 inches) across at that altitude.
The high resolution of the HiRISE image enabled Opportunity's mission planners on Wednesday (Oct.4) to identify specific rover-scale targets of interest as they planned that day's drive. It is a first in the exploration of Mars.
Opportunity has since driven north to the tip of the Cape Verde promontory, where the rover will take images of the crater interior.
HiRISE's stunning overview of Victoria crater shows a distinctive scalloped shape to its rim. This is formed by eroding crater wall material moving downhill. Layered sedimentary rocks are exposed along the inner wall of the crater, and boulders that have fallen from the crater wall are visible on the crater floor. A striking field of sand dunes covers much of the crater floor.
"The ground-truth we get from the rover images and measurements enables us to better interpret features we see elsewhere on Mars, including very rugged and dramatic terrains that we can't currently study on the ground," McEwen said.
"But stay tuned," McEwen said at the press conference. "If you think this HiRISE image is spectacular, just wait."
Images from the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment and additional information about the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter are available online at: http://www.nasa.gov/mro and http://HiRISE.lpl.arizona.edu
The Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington. Lockheed Martin Space Systems is the prime contractor for the project and built the spacecraft. The HiRISE camera was built by Ball Aerospace Corporation and is operated by The University of Arizona.
Lori Stiles | University of Arizona
From the cosmos to fusion plasmas, PPPL presents findings at global APS gathering
13.11.2018 | DOE/Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory
A two-atom quantum duet
12.11.2018 | Institute for Basic Science
Biochips have been developed at TU Wien (Vienna), on which tissue can be produced and examined. This allows supplying the tissue with different substances in a very controlled way.
Cultivating human cells in the Petri dish is not a big challenge today. Producing artificial tissue, however, permeated by fine blood vessels, is a much more...
Faster and secure data communication: This is the goal of a new joint project involving physicists from the University of Würzburg. The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research funds the project with 14.8 million euro.
In our digital world data security and secure communication are becoming more and more important. Quantum communication is a promising approach to achieve...
On Saturday, 10 November 2018, the research icebreaker Polarstern will leave its homeport of Bremerhaven, bound for Cape Town, South Africa.
When choosing materials to make something, trade-offs need to be made between a host of properties, such as thickness, stiffness and weight. Depending on the application in question, finding just the right balance is the difference between success and failure
Now, a team of Penn Engineers has demonstrated a new material they call "nanocardboard," an ultrathin equivalent of corrugated paper cardboard. A square...
Physicists at ETH Zurich demonstrate how errors that occur during the manipulation of quantum system can be monitored and corrected on the fly
The field of quantum computation has seen tremendous progress in recent years. Bit by bit, quantum devices start to challenge conventional computers, at least...
09.11.2018 | Event News
06.11.2018 | Event News
23.10.2018 | Event News
13.11.2018 | Life Sciences
13.11.2018 | Life Sciences
13.11.2018 | Awards Funding