Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Image

NASA Releases HiRISE Images of Curiosity's Descent 220

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the in-space-everything-is-awesome dept.
gcnaddict writes "NASA released content from the MRO HiRISE imager taken during the descent of the Curiosity Rover. Among the most notable artifacts are the images themselves as well as a diagram showing the exact location of the rover relative to NASA's target." Update: 08/07 00:15 GMT by U L : And now for a picture from the rover itself.

*

This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

NASA Releases HiRISE Images of Curiosity's Descent

Comments Filter:
  • Fantastic! (Score:5, Funny)

    by PPH (736903) on Monday August 06, 2012 @07:29PM (#40900323)

    Nice shot. And kudos to the folks who painted the white square on the surface of Mars. If only the people who striped our freeways could have done such a good job.

  • Too cool (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Niris (1443675) on Monday August 06, 2012 @07:30PM (#40900327)
    Watched the stream last night of Mission Control, and coupled with this and the other images it has just been too cool.
  • Freaking incredible. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Bitsy Boffin (110334) on Monday August 06, 2012 @07:30PM (#40900331) Homepage

    Just think about this a moment. NASA took a photo from a satellite, of a probe landing on another planet. And they got telemetry relayed about the landing from ANOTHER satellite.

    And it's not just a bright pixel, you can clearly see what it is.

    Stunning.

    • Yes, the detail on the parachute is absolutely amazing. In fact, the whole thing is amazing.

      (Looks up furtively, tightens tin foil hat, scrunches down.)

    • by gcnaddict (841664) on Monday August 06, 2012 @07:41PM (#40900431)
      You're not the first to think that, either. The same message was conveyed by the BadAstronomy blog [badastronomy.com] when the same such shot was released from Phoenix.

      Think on this, and think on it carefully: you are seeing a manmade object falling gracefully and with intent to the surface of an alien world, as seen by another manmade object already circling that world, both of them acting robotically, and both of them hundreds of million of kilometers away.

      Never, ever forget: we did this. This is what we can do.

    • by Firehed (942385) on Monday August 06, 2012 @07:45PM (#40900453) Homepage

      I mean that's cool and all, but I think the more significant piece is that the landing was accurate to within 2km with a journey covering nine months and somewhere roughly around 200m km. Scale that down to something we can actually comprehend, and it's using autopilot for 100km and being accurate to within 1mm. Where talking to your co-pilot takes as much as 14 minutes, with another 14 minutes to hear their response.

      We've got some damn fine people working on this.

      • by Swampash (1131503) on Monday August 06, 2012 @08:02PM (#40900567)

        We've got some damn fine people working on this.
        And a lot of them will be looking for work after the next round of NASA budget cuts - no matter who wins the next election.

        NASA's budget as a fraction of federal spending is 0.48%. That's the lowest it's been since 1960. And it's getting smaller.

        Dig on this:

        Curiosity project budget: USD 2.5 billion

        Cost of "War on Terror" so far: USD 1.36 trillion and counting (yes that's one thousand three hundred and sixty billion)

        • by InterGuru (50986)

          Curiosity project budget: USD 2.5 billion

          Cost of "War on Terror" so far: USD 1.36 trillion and counting (yes that's one thousand three hundred and sixty billion)

          The $2.5B would hardly serve to bail out one sleazy banker so he can get his bonus.

        • Here in California they just floated $5 billion in bonds for that fuckhead Fossil Brown's full scale choo choo train set. The final bill could cover fifty Mars overs.

          This is what you get, you republican and democrat party loyalists, when you put your particular breed of sociopath into office over and over.

          Yeah, i know- its the OTHER side that's all stoooopid and evuuul and your team is all ponies and purity. Don't even start in with your red or blue shit. You're ALL guilty.

          • Yes! Both sides are exactly equally as bad! One of them having gone completely giggling-with-glee-as-they-drive-off-the-cliff insane doesn't matter, THEY'RE BOTH EXACTLY EQUALLY AS BAD IN EVERY SENSE.

            By the way, if you want to have some credibility as a non-partisan, you should avoid explicitly declaring that you won't listen to anyone who disagrees with you. But you have, so there's no point elaborating or in any other way attempting to explain that the (R)s and (D)s are not remotely equally as bad.
      • I mean that's cool and all, but I think the more significant piece is that the landing was accurate to within 2km with a journey covering nine months and somewhere roughly around 200m km.

        Well, they weren't "accurate within 2km" in the conventional sense - which would mean they came down within 2km of a designated point. Curiosity didn't have a designated point, it had an eclipse and NASA would have been "on target" and considered a success regardless of where it landed in the eclipse. (The far edge of the

      • by Joce640k (829181)

        I mean that's cool and all, but I think the more significant piece is that the landing was accurate to within 2km with a journey covering nine months and somewhere roughly around 200m km.

        To be fair; they've made a few course corrections along the way.

      • by Waccoon (1186667)

        Remember: Mars is in orbit, so you have to calculate where your landing pad will be after 9 months, taking into consideration planetary rotation and relativistic effects.

        Like trying to land a glider on an airborne helicopter pad -- and doing it gently.

    • I was somewhat amazed the whole landing worked, so many complex parts that had to work together...

      And then like you say - a casual snap shot from above of the thing on descent! Too amazing.

      I'll put on several hats just to take them all off for all the NASA engineers on this one. It was a really spectacular success and it was fantastic how well they did at getting visual confirmation right off the bat before it went into radio silence.

    • by Spy Handler (822350) on Monday August 06, 2012 @08:02PM (#40900571) Homepage Journal

      Reminds me of the story where humans send a robotic probe to another star, and after decades of traveling it finally gets there and beams back the first images. The people at mission control yawn and are hardly excited because they've all seen the images already; during the time the probe was in transit, the aliens from that star already came to earth via warp drive. And the only person in the room who was excited about the whole thing was an alien in attendance, because the aliens have warp technology but they don't have good robotics.

      Well if we ever get humans orbiting and living on Mars, these images will seem about as exciting as Columbus's sketches of Bahama island. Just a thought.

    • by EETech1 (1179269)

      And they planned that (a couple years ago) so it would be there to take that picture so they can show us just how fscking awesome they really are.

      You guys kick ass!

  • Image sources (Score:5, Informative)

    by Ryanrule (1657199) on Monday August 06, 2012 @07:33PM (#40900355)
  • why http://hirise.lpl.arizona.edu/ [arizona.edu] didn't release a sequence of pictures? It'd be so awesome! Perhaps the other ones are blurry ...

  • by lemur3 (997863) on Monday August 06, 2012 @07:38PM (#40900397)

    I think something missed in all of this is how powerful imagery is.

    Imagine a world without photographs ?

    This mission, and ones before it.. highlight how important this invention, photography, is.

    We have photographs of this on its chute landing.. this is the second time we've done it.. and we got photographs back as soon as it landed.. This is great... and the excitement of the crew, and the public, upon seeing these images is a testament to how far photography has come in the past 150ish years.

    Kudos to all of those who made this happen.. for the science it will do.. and further affirming the power of images in our world..

  • by gcnaddict (841664) on Monday August 06, 2012 @07:38PM (#40900399)
    I neglected to mention the obvious point in my submission that this was HiRISE's second such shot.

    http://hirise.lpl.arizona.edu/phoenix-descent.php

    The first shot of the sort was this one from the Phoenix lander.
  • Cheap Mission (Score:5, Informative)

    by ThePeices (635180) on Monday August 06, 2012 @08:19PM (#40900691)

    What amazes me is how cheap the entire MSL mission is...

    The entire budget was only 4 days in Iraq/Afghanistan, or approx USD$2.5billion.

    NASA's entire budget is less than what the US Army spends on air-conditioning in Iraq/Afghanistan ( USD$20 billion ).

    I. Kid. You. Not.

    • Re:Cheap Mission (Score:4, Insightful)

      by ScentCone (795499) on Monday August 06, 2012 @08:44PM (#40900875)
      And which mission is the one trying to prevent another entire generation in that region from falling under the control of a bunch of medieval-minded religious thugs who drag school teachers out into the town square and shoot them in the head in front of their students for talking about current events and science? You know, things like landing an SUV on Mars with the help of female scientists who are allowed to drive themselves to work where they can talk to men, read and write, and make a living doing science.

      You're right. We can only do one thing at a time. We should focus on more rovers, and tell the Taliban that they're welcome to roll that region back into the Dark Ages again, and do their level best to work their way into more influence in nuclear-armed Pakistan.

      Or maybe it is possible to do two things, possibly even three things, at once? In the interests of both practicing fantastic science like this, and endeavoring to show the world that Western Civilization thinks its rude to burn down school houses for daring to talk about it. Nah, that's crazy talk, right?
      • Thoughtful analysis untainted by political correctness is getting scarce these days. Which by definition means it's getting more valuable.

      • I'd mod you up too if I had points. Troll is completely unwarranted.
      • I don't like the Taliban. At all. They're a bunch of lying, autocratic, misogynistic, terrorizing, hypocritical warlord assholes (and a whole lot of other choice words). Yet I wholly agree that the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan were huge, obvious mistakes from day one.

        People tend to get fed up with oppressive governments rather quickly. Given time, they'll take care of them all by themselves, as history has shown repeatedly. Unless, of course, an invading army comes along, bombing your country back to the st

      • Aren't you ignoring a very important detail: NASA budget is negligible compared to spending on "preventing entire region from falling under the control" of taliban?

        "Doing only one thing at a time" in this context is like saying "oh, I can't help my kid construct a Lego house, since I'm already building a real house", duh...
      • Re:Cheap Mission (Score:5, Informative)

        by radio4fan (304271) on Tuesday August 07, 2012 @03:06AM (#40902641)

        And which mission is the one trying to prevent another entire generation in that region from falling under the control of a bunch of medieval-minded religious thugs...

        Neither. The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have exactly as much to do with women, education and religious freedom as they have to do with exploring Mars.

        Which is to say, nothing at all.

      • by f3rret (1776822)

        You're right. We can only do one thing at a time. We should focus on more rovers, and tell the Taliban that they're welcome to roll that region back into the Dark Ages again...

        Yeah we should Europe had a dark age and then we turned into you guys and modern day Europe. Maybe the "dark ages"-stage of civilization is important and this whole "we can fix it (with bombing)"-attitude is not completely correct.

        and do their level best to work their way into more influence in nuclear-armed Pakistan.

        Pakistan controls the Taliban, not the other way around. Pakistan WANTS the Taliban to win because then they have a radical Pashtu controlled country loyal to them.

    • by Gothmolly (148874)

      And if the US leaves that middle eastern shithole, you can bet with certainty that no kid from that place will ever set foot on another planet.

      • This guy is right. Iraq never had universities - there were no phds, engineers or scientists. Hell, they didn't even have roads or their own infrastructure to drill and refine their oil... at least after it all fell apart in the 80's during the peak of involvement, ignore that detail.

        The sad reality is that it seems the middle east shithole is only such as result from giants using it as a place to shit.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward

          http://costsofwar.org/article/education-universities-iraq-and-us/

          When I was being a vocal critic of the war in 2003, it never ceased to amaze me how little of conditions in Iraq Americans actually knew...

      • by f3rret (1776822)

        And if the US leaves that middle eastern shithole, you can bet with certainty that no kid from that place will ever set foot on another planet.

        Yeah, and?

        The world is a harsh and uncaring place, the idea that we can "fix it" or "make it better" is at best needlessly romantic and at worst actually culturally damaging.
        There are periods in the developing of a stable civilization/nation where a lot of people have to die and a lot more have to go through unimaginable hell, these periods are important and have to happen.

  • Was there Cake?

"The chain which can be yanked is not the eternal chain." -- G. Fitch

Working...