New high res images from mars


Mars Orbiter has captured thousands of images in high resolution from the surface of the Grumpy Reddish Planet. The picture you see here is a chain of pit craters. That must have been one helluva noisy event. Reminds me of the walls at the Entebe Airport.

Anyway, the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera takes pictures that are about 6 km wide and some greater amount long, wiht resolution down to as small as one meter. The pictures are being released a few at a time and you can access them here.

There are even 3D images but you will need special glasses to see them.


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Haven't they spackled the walls at Entebbe yet?

I like that large hole at the top; you can see it as a pit or as a bump. :)

By MadScientist (not verified) on 05 Sep 2009 #permalink

Is that an isolated glancing impact feature?

Can't tell without context around it but in some ways it looks like a tunnel gully -- I've watched these happen in N. California on small scales after a fire when a whole lot more water moves through a seasonal watercourse, cuts a narrow deep notch down through loose material, then hits a hard layer and makes a wide tube underground that becomes potholes.

On a steep slope like I'm familiar with the sides slump in so they're transient; but in Australia and New Zealand they form quite large long-lived series of potholes:……

I recall seeing an earlier Mars photo that reminded me of this kind of development that included both a long 'crack' opening and potholes along the same approximate line.

And Mars would be a likely site for the material these things form in -- large amounts of loosely consolidated aeolian material on hard sloping surfaces -- if there was ever some intermittent water flow.

By Hank Roberts (not verified) on 05 Sep 2009 #permalink

Thanks for the link. Really incredible images, especially in 3D. I'm not a big fan of anaglyph images (red/cyan stereo glasses), but NASA also has excellent left/right stereo images you can download. To view you can use free stereo software such as Stereo Photo Maker (windoze only, but may work in Wine). I also notice that there are Linux stereo viewers available now as well.

To view I use a handheld Screenscope, which works well and cost less than $50, but I'd also like to try nVidia's 3D Vision system, which may be the best way to view stereo at this point.
nVidia system

By Scott Rowed (not verified) on 05 Sep 2009 #permalink

I like that they have really no faint notion how these things formed. Features a little less intermittent are often described as "collapsed lava tubes", ludicrously when they're a mile wide. With a few more breaks, they're called "grabens". With enough breaks, identical features are called a "series of impact craters".

By Nathan Myers (not verified) on 05 Sep 2009 #permalink

Quick update on Stereo Photo Maker. It works fine under Wine in Ubuntu 9.04, especially as it doesn't "install" in Windows, but just runs as an .exe file saved on the hard drive. In Linux you just right click on the .exe file and select "open with Wine...".

By Scott Rowed (not verified) on 07 Sep 2009 #permalink

Scott: Cool!

"Quick update on Stereo Photo Maker. It works fine under Wine in Ubuntu 9.04"

I have been doing this as well. So far I have only had one problem, but it's a biggie: Unable to save results. When I try to save a stereo image, it seems to work, but the there is no image in the content, only solid black. When I try to save Left/Right images, the program aborts before the Save dialog appears. Has anyone observed/resolved this?

Thanks. DOM

By D. Miller (not verified) on 08 May 2010 #permalink