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Blog Archive

 

Planetfest 2012 Was a Huge Success

Posted by Casey Dreier on 2012/08/08 07:46 CDT

Planetfest 2012 ended in the best possible way: the Curiosity rover touched down safely on the surface of Mars. In our ballroom, almost two thousand people leapt to their feet and provided thunderous applause to accompany the joyous celebration at mission control.

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First full-resolution MARDI frame: Bye-bye, heat shield

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2012/08/07 11:50 CDT | 11 comments

The thumbnail versions of the Mars Descent Imager images have shown up on the Curiosity raw images page, and hiding among them was a single full-resolution frame containing the heat shield.

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Curiosity's MAHLI camera: Much more than a microscopic imager

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2012/08/07 06:19 CDT | 3 comments

Today's press briefing featured the first image from MAHLI, the Mars Hand Lens Imager, so it's time for me to dive in to this camera's capabilities.

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Curiosity: Notes from the two day-after-landing press briefings

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2012/08/06 07:43 CDT | 7 comments

Notes on Curiosity's physical state, future activities, landing site, and other stuff gleaned from the two press briefings conducted at JPL today.

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First look at Curiosity MARDI's descent animation (WOW WOW)

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2012/08/06 07:09 CDT | 5 comments

Even a preliminary, low-resolution, low-frame-rate version of Curiosity's descent imager animation of the arrival on Mars contains almost more awesome than I can stand.

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A "long" view of the Curiosity Descending image

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2012/08/06 06:41 CDT | 2 comments

A wider (well, longer) view of the amazing HiRISE image that shows Curiosity descending under parachute to Mars

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Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter HiRISE has done it again!!

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2012/08/06 10:42 CDT | 2 comments

In 2008, Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter snapped an amazing photo of Phoenix descending to the surface of Mars under its parachute. Now it's repeated the feat, with Curiosity.

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Getting the most out of those first images from Mars

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2012/08/06 09:25 CDT | 5 comments

It's such a rare joy to be able to dive into the images returned from a brand-new mission. The very first images that come to Earth and get posted on the Web are usually of relatively poor quality compared to what comes later, and Curiosity's are no exception to that rule.

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Mars Exploration Rovers Update: Opportunity Works on a Whim, Team to Stand Down for Curiosity

Posted by A.J.S. Rayl on 2012/08/03 02:29 CDT | 1 comments

Opportunity roved on to new targets near the rim of Endeavour Crater in July, as the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) team prepared to stand down for the Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity

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HiWishing for 3D Mars images, part III

Posted by Alfred McEwen on 2012/08/01 12:00 CDT

The final article of a three-part series of images from the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter’s HiRISE camera.

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Pretty Panoramas: Opportunity at Whim Creek

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2012/07/30 01:11 CDT | 2 comments

I know it’s been all Curiosity, all the time on this blog for the last couple of weeks, and that’s not likely to change much for the next couple of weeks. But I don’t want people to forget that there’s another rover exploring Mars’ ancient geology. Opportunity has been taking spectacular photos of Whim Creek and Endeavour Crater this last week.

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Mars Exploration Rovers Update: Opportunity Digs Cape York, Roves to New Milestone

Posted by A.J.S. Rayl on 2012/07/04 01:57 CDT | 3 comments

Even robots deserve a break once in a while, and when the Mars Odyssey orbiter went into safe mode in June, Opportunity got the chance to hang out and leisurely take in her surroundings at the Red Planet, while the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) mission downshifted into lower gear.

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Talking Climate With Bill Nye

Posted by Mat Kaplan on 2012/07/03 04:04 CDT | 2 comments

Talk about changing climates on this world and others brought 600 people to the Boulder Theater.

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HiWishing for 3D Mars images, part II

Posted by Alfred McEwen on 2012/07/03 02:39 CDT | 1 comments

Part two of a three-part series of images from the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter’s HiRISE camera.

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Three Thousand Sols

Posted by Stuart Atkinson on 2012/07/02 11:18 CDT

Earlier today, unnoticed by the vast majority of the world, Opportunity reached and then silently passed a major milestone in her great adventure on Mars. At just before 3am, UK time, Opportunity began her 3000th sol, or martian day, on Mars.

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HiWishing for 3D Mars images, part I

Posted by Alfred McEwen on 2012/06/18 03:10 CDT

Hundreds of images from the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter’s HiRISE camera are publicly available, if you know where to look.

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Remembering Ray Bradbury

Posted by Mat Kaplan on 2012/06/06 05:16 CDT | 3 comments

Mat recalls stories from his many interactions with Ray Bradbury, and provides links to Ray's Planetary Radio episodes.

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Mars Exploration Rovers Update: Opportunity Departs Winter Site for Field of Veins

Posted by A.J.S. Rayl on 2012/06/02 05:43 CDT

The Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity strolled out of her winter haven this May to continue the expedition around Endeavour Crater, roving into yet another Martian spring.

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A stunning view of Mars from Argyre to Thaumasia

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla on 2012/05/18 06:33 CDT

Image magician Daniel Machacek has done it again, producing a jaw-dropping view of Mars from Viking Orbiter 1, featuring a frosty Argyre basin and stretching across to a series of faults called Thaumasia Fossae.

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Third Martian Anniversary for Mars Climate Sounder

Posted by David Kass on 2012/05/16 11:35 CDT | 2 comments

May 16, 2012 is the third martian anniversary of the start of Mars Climate Sounder (MCS) observations from Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. MCS started measuring the atmosphere of Mars three Mars years ago, on September 24, 2006. We can now compare the weather and behavior of the atmosphere in three different years, and find the temperature differences to be surprisingly large.

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