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Old 08-14-2012, 10:06 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Glitch View Post
If you zoom into where Curiosity landed, in your linked image, you can see where the thrusters cleared the Martian regolith away. The light blue hue just north and south of the MSL is the exposed bedrock created by the thrusters upon landing. The landing also appears to have disturbed a large area around the MSL that can be seen as a slightly darker patch surrounding the MSL and extending out to around a hundred foot radius or so.
Thanks Glitch, for mentioning the zoom feature. I didn't try that earlier. It's cool that you can zoom in for a closer look at objects and features. Somewhat off in the distance, there's a mound-like rock outcrop that looks layered. Looks like a view of the crater walls off in the distance in part of the view, but where's Mt. Sharp?
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Old 08-14-2012, 10:35 PM
 
Location: Wasilla, Alaska
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NightBazaar View Post
Thanks Glitch, for mentioning the zoom feature. I didn't try that earlier. It's cool that you can zoom in for a closer look at objects and features. Somewhat off in the distance, there's a mound-like rock outcrop that looks layered. Looks like a view of the crater walls off in the distance in part of the view, but where's Mt. Sharp?
Mt. Sharp is below the bottom of your linked image, toward the southeast, quite a ways actually. That strip cannot be more than a mile or so long. Also, if you zoom into the blue section, south of the MSL, you will note that it is not very deep. You can see sand-like regolith in patches covering the bedrock. The terrain gets more interesting the further south you go toward Mt. Sharp.
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Old 08-15-2012, 08:08 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Glitch View Post
Mt. Sharp is below the bottom of your linked image, toward the southeast, quite a ways actually. That strip cannot be more than a mile or so long. Also, if you zoom into the blue section, south of the MSL, you will note that it is not very deep. You can see sand-like regolith in patches covering the bedrock. The terrain gets more interesting the further south you go toward Mt. Sharp.
In the 360 panoramic view by Curiosity's camera? That's pretty much what I was referring to when I said I was wondering where Mt. Sharp is.

There's an image that was taken by Curiosity showing Mt Sharp off in the distance, not very clear, but still quite distinctive. Another photo in this link shows a view of the crater walls, which is indeed what I presumed it to be. I don't see anything that looks even remotely similar to Mt Sharp in the 360 panoramic view though. Do you? It csn't be a true 360 degree view.
Mars Rover says: 'Good Evening Gale Crater!': Big Pics : Discovery News

Here's a graph that includes both a distance scale gauge and is color coded to represent differences in elevation. The areas in blue are clearly the lowest elevations.
File:Topographic Map of Gale Crater.jpg - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Here's another showing a checkerboard layout. Each square represents about 0.9 miles on each side. According to this article, Curiosity has about 4 miles to travel in order to reach its target destination which contains the interesting layers of rock. If I'm looking at it correctly, Curiosity is not necessarily expected to reach the summit of Mt. Sharp, although I did think that could be an eventual possibility. It'd be a great view from up there.

In this same article, is a photo (the last one) showing a red box, which is the destination for Curiosity. It looks a long way off, and for Curiosity, it IS a long way off. But if we relate that image to the checkerboard layout, then the image showing the target destination is that it's about 4 miles away.
Where the Mars Curiosity Rover Is Headed Next - Alexis Madrigal - The Atlantic#

In the HiRISE images I posted (the one that shows Curiosity as a small dot) the areas we see numerous sand dunes. Those dunes are located at lower elevations. I was incorrect to think near the bottom of the photo strip, where it gets into more tan colors, it would suggest being at the crater walls.The view is said to be quite a bit shorter than a mile or so. Curiosity is about 980 feet from the bottom of the picture. Mt. Sharp is not in this view. The dunes near the bottom of th picture are located between Curiosity and Mt. Sharp. (See first HiRISE/JPL link below UPDATE IV: A NEW WORLD FOR CURIOSITY for details)
HiRISE | HiRISE Captures MSL's Descent to Mars
http://hirise.lpl.arizona.edu/images...B.NOMAP-2x.jpg

Confusing matters even more, another comment about the same picture says that the distance shown in the image is more like 4 miles between Curiosity and the end of the image, and about another mile to the target. Go figure.
Get the long view of the Mars Curiosity rover's locale - PhotoBlog

A look at obstacles that Curiosity will have to face to get to the base of Mt Sharp.
Mars Science Laboratory: Images

Another interesting article by The Atlantic addresses a question of why we're seeing blue rocks in Curiosity's photos. Obviously that has little to do with elevation and more to do with 'image enhancement' (photoshopping) to increase contrasts. If you were actually standing there on Mars, you'd see shadowing from the Sun, but apart from that, most views would lack color contrasts that we see here on Earth. Most of the surface of Mars would just be somewhat reddish with whites and darker gray shadows for more of a dull monotonous contrast.
Why Are There *Blue* Rocks in the Latest Photos from Mars? - Alexis Madrigal - The Atlantic

Last edited by NightBazaar; 08-15-2012 at 09:09 AM..
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Old 08-15-2012, 10:26 AM
 
Location: Wasilla, Alaska
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NightBazaar View Post
In the 360 panoramic view by Curiosity's camera? That's pretty much what I was referring to when I said I was wondering where Mt. Sharp is.
Ah, well the 360° panoramic link you provided is not by Curiosity's camera, but rather from the Mars rover Spirit or Opportunity (I am not sure which one). Another give-away are the rover's tracks in the image. Curiosity has not moved yet.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NightBazaar View Post
There's an image that was taken by Curiosity showing Mt Sharp off in the distance, not very clear, but still quite distinctive. Another photo in this link shows a view of the crater walls, which is indeed what I presumed it to be. I don't see anything that looks even remotely similar to Mt Sharp in the 360 panoramic view though. Do you? It csn't be a true 360 degree view.
Mars Rover says: 'Good Evening Gale Crater!': Big Pics : Discovery News
The panoramic is indeed a full 360° view, just not of Gale Crater.

There is also an error in the text describing the image in your above link. They describe Mt. Sharp as a "three-mile-high mound -- taller than any mountain in the continental United States." Well, as someone who lives in Alaska, which is part of the continental US, we have many mountains with peaks taller than three miles. The tallest peak in the continental US is 3.85 miles (20,320 feet) which we call Denali in Alaska, and you lower-48ers call "Mt. McKinley." What they should have said is Mt. Sharp is "taller than any mountain in the contiguous United States."

Quote:
Originally Posted by NightBazaar View Post
Here's a graph that includes both a distance scale gauge and is color coded to represent differences in elevation. The areas in blue are clearly the lowest elevations.
File:Topographic Map of Gale Crater.jpg - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Here's another showing a checkerboard layout. Each square represents about 0.9 miles on each side. According to this article, Curiosity has about 4 miles to travel in order to reach its target destination which contains the interesting layers of rock. If I'm looking at it correctly, Curiosity is not necessarily expected to reach the summit of Mt. Sharp, although I did think that could be an eventual possibility. It'd be a great view from up there.

In this same article, is a photo (the last one) showing a red box, which is the destination for Curiosity. It looks a long way off, and for Curiosity, it IS a long way off. But if we relate that image to the checkerboard layout, then the image showing the target destination is that it's about 4 miles away.
Where the Mars Curiosity Rover Is Headed Next - Alexis Madrigal - The Atlantic#
Finally, an image with some sense of scale.

That would make the HiRISE image only about 2.5 miles at most in length. It would also put the peak of Mt. Sharp somewhere between 20 and 25 miles south-southeast of the MSL.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NightBazaar View Post
In the HiRISE images I posted (the one that shows Curiosity as a small dot) the areas we see numerous sand dunes. Those dunes are located at lower elevations. I was incorrect to think near the bottom of the photo strip, where it gets into more tan colors, it would suggest being at the crater walls.The view is said to be quite a bit shorter than a mile or so. Curiosity is about 980 feet from the bottom of the picture. Mt. Sharp is not in this view. The dunes near the bottom of th picture are located between Curiosity and Mt. Sharp. (See first HiRISE/JPL link below UPDATE IV: A NEW WORLD FOR CURIOSITY for details)
HiRISE | HiRISE Captures MSL's Descent to Mars
http://hirise.lpl.arizona.edu/images...B.NOMAP-2x.jpg
The "blue" dunes are also in shadow, which appears in the grid map as square #79. I agree, Mt. Sharp is not in the HiRISE view. It is a very detailed image of maybe 2.5 miles in length and about 1,000 feet across.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NightBazaar View Post
Confusing matters even more, another comment about the same picture says that the distance shown in the image is more like 4 miles between Curiosity and the end of the image, and about another mile to the target. Go figure.
Get the long view of the Mars Curiosity rover's locale - PhotoBlog
I agree, it is confusing, but if those grids are roughly 0.9 miles, then the HiRISE strip image cannot be any longer than about 2.5 miles. It ends just south of the dunes. The MSL still has about another two miles further south (off the HiRISE map) to reach its destination.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NightBazaar View Post
A look at obstacles that Curiosity will have to face to get to the base of Mt Sharp.
Mars Science Laboratory: Images

Another interesting article by The Atlantic addresses a question of why we're seeing blue rocks in Curiosity's photos. Obviously that has little to do with elevation and more to do with 'image enhancement' (photoshopping) to increase contrasts. If you were actually standing there on Mars, you'd see shadowing from the Sun, but apart from that, most views would lack color contrasts that we see here on Earth. Most of the surface of Mars would just be somewhat reddish with whites and darker gray shadows for more of a dull monotonous contrast.
Why Are There *Blue* Rocks in the Latest Photos from Mars? - Alexis Madrigal - The Atlantic
The reason color contrast on Mars is not as good as it is on Earth is explained below:
Quote:
The brightness of the sun on Mars, were there to be a clear day, is about half the brightness of a similar day here on Earth. I arrive at the value of one-half simply by knowing that the brightness of an object decreases by the square of the distance, and since mars is on average 1.5 times as far from the Sun as earth, 1.5 times 1.5 is 2.25, and 1 divided by 2.25 is 0.44, or 44 percent as bright.

Now, just because the apparent brightness is half, that does not necessarily mean that the scene will be half as bright on Mars. Mars' less massive atmosphere will mean less scattering of light, and thus the clear martian sky would not be as blue as here on earth, and all the scattered light which we see here on Earth, which makes the sun appear a bit less of a flashlight beam than it is would all conspire to make the Martian sky appear darker.

Source: Jim Murphy, Mars Pathfinder ASI/MET Science Team
At top speed (1.5 inches per second on a hard, flat, level surface) it will take Curiosity at least 47 hours to travel 4 miles. Or 0.0852 miles per hour, or 450 feet per hour, or 2 miles per day. Fast, it is not.

Last edited by Glitch; 08-15-2012 at 11:01 AM..
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Old 08-15-2012, 04:27 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Glitch View Post
Ah, well the 360° panoramic link you provided is not by Curiosity's camera, but rather from the Mars rover Spirit or Opportunity (I am not sure which one). Another give-away are the rover's tracks in the image. Curiosity has not moved yet.


The panoramic is indeed a full 360° view, just not of Gale Crater.

There is also an error in the text describing the image in your above link. They describe Mt. Sharp as a "three-mile-high mound -- taller than any mountain in the continental United States." Well, as someone who lives in Alaska, which is part of the continental US, we have many mountains with peaks taller than three miles. The tallest peak in the continental US is 3.85 miles (20,320 feet) which we call Denali in Alaska, and you lower-48ers call "Mt. McKinley." What they should have said is Mt. Sharp is "taller than any mountain in the contiguous United States."
DOH! Well, that certainly explains why Mt Sharp wasn't showing. LOL! You have very "sharp" eyes. That was from the Opportunity rover. Sorry about that. Let's try it again. This should be a little bit better. I still can't tell where Mt Sharp is in this one though. Possibly the tallest area in this image. Its slope is said isn't too steep.
Curiosity rover: Martian solar day 2

I think the comment mentioning "the continental US" was just a slip-up. Some habits are hard to break. Glsd it wasn't me that said it.


Quote:
Finally, an image with some sense of scale.

That would make the HiRISE image only about 2.5 miles at most in length. It would also put the peak of Mt. Sharp somewhere between 20 and 25 miles south-southeast of the MSL.
Curiosity landed a bit off from the revised oval-shaped target. I agree, the lack of scales make it a bit difficult to judge distance in a photo. There's a whopping difference between 980 feet and 4 miles. Perhaps the 980 feet should have been elevation? 20 to 25 miles might be a bit too far. According to The Daily Galaxy, "But it may be a full year before the remote-controlled rover gets to the base of the peak, which is believed to be within a dozen miles (20 kilometers) of the rover's landing site."
Curiosity to Begin Climb Up Mount Sharp --"Some Form of Life was Once Likely"


Quote:
The "blue" dunes are also in shadow, which appears in the grid map as square #79. I agree, Mt. Sharp is not in the HiRISE view. It is a very detailed image of maybe 2.5 miles in length and about 1,000 feet across.

I agree, it is confusing, but if those grids are roughly 0.9 miles, then the HiRISE strip image cannot be any longer than about 2.5 miles. It ends just south of the dunes. The MSL still has about another two miles further south (off the HiRISE map) to reach its destination.




The reason color contrast on Mars is not as good as it is on Earth is explained below:
That may be, but NASA has said it makes image adjustments, including coloration, to better bring out features, to represent differences in elevation, to distinguish mineral deposits and to correct any errors in the transmission of data as it is received.


Quote:
At top speed (1.5 inches per second on a hard, flat, level surface) it will take Curiosity at least 47 hours to travel 4 miles. Or 0.0852 miles per hour, or 450 feet per hour, or 2 miles per day. Fast, it is not.
Yeah, it's not going to be a contender to break any speed records at Daytona or Indianapolis. It could take a year to get to its destination target. I think its likely its going to come across a few obstacles along the way. As great as some of the HiRise images are, things can be very different from the rover's perspective. It's going to be a slow journey.

Last edited by NightBazaar; 08-15-2012 at 04:36 PM..
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Old 08-15-2012, 08:56 PM
 
Location: Sarasota, Florida
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Color enhanced(why it appears bluish) picture of Curiosity taken from Martian Orbit>>>>>

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Old 08-19-2012, 01:28 PM
 
Location: Sarasota, Florida
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Picture from Curiosity of Mt. Sharp on Mars>>>>>

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Old 08-21-2012, 04:24 PM
 
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Looks like a short test drive is planned for tomorrow. The wheels of the rover have been tested and seem to be in good working order.


Mars mega-rover wiggles its wheels - Cosmic Log




Curiosity Wiggles Wheels and Stretches Arm on Mars - YouTube


When Curiosity hits the road, it will be taking a side trip in the opposite direction from where it's planned to reach Mt. Sharp. The purpose is to look at a rocky outcrop in an alluvial plain. Curiosity will then head back near to where it first landed and head for the trail to Mt. Sharo.



Curiosity's First Stop: Ancient Flood Plains | Exclusive Video - YouTube
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Old 08-23-2012, 12:36 PM
 
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A look at part of the Seven Minutes of Terror landing process as seen from the spcecraft. This vid is a high-res look at it (posted by JPL), along with voice from Mission Control. The entire process isn't shown, but what is shown are some very impressive details.



Curiosity Drops in on Mars in High-Res - YouTube

Last edited by NightBazaar; 08-23-2012 at 01:19 PM.. Reason: Better version of landing
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Old 08-24-2012, 12:36 PM
 
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Curiosity team discover a boulder in Gale Crater and name it Coronation.

NASA Curiosity team
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