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Sunday, August 05, 2012

FIRST IMAGES FROM CURIOSITY: Earthlings SEE the new "Hood" up on Mars

ARE YOU TOTALLY INTO THE FIRST IMAGES FROM CURIOSITY? OMG. So am I.  Stay TUNED.  Within just about two hours... the very first images are likely to arrive more after landing, due to the timing of NASA's signal-relaying Odyssey orbiter.  I will post them ASAP.... This is BETTER than the OLYMPICS.... Trust me on this one....

Here is the INSIDE SCOOP from NASA:

"The images will be captured with the left and right Hazcams at the back and front of the rover, and they will not yet be full-resolution (the two images arriving on Earth first are "thumbnail" copies, which are 64 by 64 pixels in size).

The Hazcams are equipped with very wide-angle, fisheye lenses, initially ca
English: This artist's concept from an animati...
English: This artist's concept from an animation depicts Curiosity, the rover to be launched in 2011 by NASA's Mars Science Laboratory, as it is being lowered by the mission's rocket-powered descent stage during a critical moment of the "sky crane" landing in 2012. Image Credit: NASA/JPL (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
pped with clear dust covers. The covers are designed to protect the cameras from dust that may be kicked up during landing; they are clear just in case they don't pop off as expected.

 These first views will give engineers a good idea of what surrounds Curiosity, as well as its location and tilt. "Ensuring that the rover is on stable ground is important before raising the rover's mast," said Mission Manager Jennifer Trosper at JPL. "We are using an entirely new landing system on this mission, so we are proceeding with caution." Color pictures from the rover's Mars Descent Imager, or MARDI, acquired as the rover descends to the Martian surface, will help pinpoint the rover's location. Initial images from MARDI are expected to be released Aug. 6, the day after landing.

These will also be in the form of thumbnails (in the case of the science cameras, thumbnails can vary in size, with the largest being 192 pixels wide by 144 pixels high). One full-resolution image may also be returned at this time."

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