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(Discover)   What was it like for Curiosity to descend to Mars? See for yourself in this rover's-eye-view video of the landing   (blogs.discovermagazine.com) divider line 21
    More: Cool, heat shield, other worlds, Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, mantle plume  
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19203 clicks; posted to Main » on 06 Aug 2012 at 10:32 PM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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Archived thread
2012-08-06 10:45:01 PM
9 votes:
sphotos-b.xx.fbcdn.net
2012-08-06 11:02:28 PM
3 votes:

James F. Campbell: nmrsnr: Seriously, it cost roughly $2.5bn, or about $8 a person. Meanwhile, we're about to spend $3bn refurbishing a fleet of Abrams tanks that the Pentagon doesn't even want. I don't even have good snark for that, it just makes me sad.

There is a segment of human beings who live for strife, for violence, and for chaos. Until that segment is identified and eliminated, human beings will never be able to fully devote their lives to peaceful pursuits.


Just how stupid are you? The pentagon doesn't want to spend that money on tanks, they are being forced to by congressmen who have been bought by General Dynamics. I can't even imagine how frustrating it must be for some of these generals to have the best interests of the military overridden by the best interest of some shiat eating corporate profiteers.

You want some real food for thought though? Imagine if we took all the money and effort spent on the war in Iraq and put it into space exploration. We could have a permanent colony on goddam mars. Instead thousands are needlessly dead and the pockets of a few have been lined. Not to mention we are no safer than before.
2012-08-06 11:39:04 PM
2 votes:

Harry_Seldon: the_chief: Why the low resolution? Doesn't NASA have HD cameras now? I've seen better photos from a GD iPhone.

Those pictures are taken with the 1 megapixel hazard avoidance cameras (you know, for navigation).


Actually, the landing approach video was taken with the MARDI (MARs Descent Imager) camera. The camera took five color pictures per second at 1600x1200 resolution from the time that the heat shield ejected all the way until touchdown. This period took roughly 134 seconds, which means that the rover should have took roughly 670 still images.

The rover only has so much bandwidth available to transmit data back to Earth, so rather than transmitting the full, high-resolution version it has instead transmitted a highly compressed version (192x144 resolution). This compressed version will let scientists determine if they need to get the whole video right away, or if it can wait and be a low-priority task. It looks as though the landing went very smoothly, but if something unexpected had happened during landing these images would be very high priority, just to figure out what happened and why.

Assuming they were using48-bit RGB colors (and I really have no idea what format they're using) then each pixel would be 6 bytes of information, so the full length HD movie would be 1600x1200x670x6 = 7718400000 bytes, or about 7.7 gigabytes. The compressed version is only 192*144*297*6 = 32 meg, note they only sent back 297 thumbnails.

The exact bandwidth available to the Curiosity rover is a complicated answer depending on where the rover is with respect to Mars, the Earth, and any orbiting satellites, but the peak transmission rate of the direct Rover-Earth link is 32,000 Kbps, or roughly half as fast as your 56K modem back in the day. To transmit the full HD movie would take 536 hours, while the thumbnail version would have only taken about 3.4 hours, and both of those numbers assume perfect conditions.
2012-08-06 10:59:36 PM
2 votes:

Lordserb: Token Anarchist: ple bemoan the costs?!? farking savages.

I think it's more about spending the money on things that will have a greater effect on solving national problems. Don't get me wrong, this mars mission is beyond cool, but you can't tell someone he or she is wrong for wanting to have spent the money feeding the poor. Just a matter of perspective for some people I guess.


Just tell them that we are going to spend more on tanks that nobody wants than this entire mission cost.

/Sorry for harping on the subject, but the fact that this is headline news across the country, and people are worried about the cost, while the tank thing is a by-line on page 6, but nobody questions those costs seriously really, really bothers me.
2012-08-06 10:35:42 PM
2 votes:

doyner: Fark anyone who bemoans the cost. We need to do this for humanity because we can.


Seriously, it cost roughly $2.5bn, or about $8 a person. Meanwhile, we're about to spend $3bn refurbishing a fleet of Abrams tanks that the Pentagon doesn't even want. I don't even have good snark for that, it just makes me sad.
2012-08-06 09:08:07 PM
2 votes:
img829.imageshack.us
2012-08-07 11:32:27 AM
1 votes:
blogs.discovermagazine.com

For anyone that talks about NASA's budget being too high, programs such as this being a waste of money, etc.

Here's a fact for you:

The American public perceives the NASA budget as commanding a much larger share of the federal budget than it in fact does. A 1997 poll reported that Americans had an average estimate of 20% for NASA's share of the federal budget, far higher than the actual 0.5% to under 1% that has been maintained throughout the late '90s and first decade of the 2000s.

This budget is being decreased further in 2013 with a 20 percent reduction in NASA's planetary science division.

Here's the kicker, the return on the investment:

The $25 billion in 1958 dollars spent on civilian space R & D during the 1958-1969 period has returned $52 billion through 1971 -- and will continue to produce pay offs through 1987, at which time the total pay off will have been $181 billion. The discounted rate of return for this investment will have been 33 percent.

As a country, we have the general sentiment that we want to maintain our ability to be on the forefront of technical development but the lack of understanding of the general public and forethought of those that represent us in cutting science and R&D budgets is in direct opposition to this.

Now; if we look at other federal budgets, and the waste involved . . . the priorities of our nation our seriously suspect.

We need to think long term.
2012-08-07 01:23:03 AM
1 votes:

nmrsnr: EffervescingElephant: Can one of you Farkers please explain to me why this one is so friggin special, and why do i KNEED to watch the landing of another rover?

Hi, are you watching the Olympics? So far, we've had 30 of them, we have one every 4 years and the events are, more or less, the same ones every 4 years. Do you like watching people set world records? They are doing things marginally faster/higher/stronger than have ever been done before. Why do we care? Because it is something that people have planned and prepared for for years and have only one chance to succeed at. When they do, and they surpass what humanity has ever done before through sweat, blood, and tears, that is something worth getting excited about. If you don't get that, I really don't know what to tell you.



Hi..
and no i am not watching the Olympics either...thanks for the history lesson tho...having lived in a cave for the last few decades i wasn't aware they held those events every 4 years...but thanks none the less for the education.
No i don't particularly like watching people set world records, especially when it involves people running around in circles trying to edge out another by a millisecond or so - just not relevant to my interests.
Personally i would prefer to see humanity trying to surpass what has ever done before through sweat, blood, and tears by treating each other better and making this world a better place through education, development and kindness...but meh... that is just my opinion
you keep striving for that gold in beach volleyball tho...


/sorry i don't feed into what the mass media forces down our cultural throats...
2012-08-07 12:30:59 AM
1 votes:

anfrind: Harry_Seldon: You would think if they were going to fly all that way, they would spool out a couple of strands of fiber optic cable.

What about a really long stick?

[www.internetmemepics.com image 461x600]


Troll guy with the stick already knows that stick-transmission is actually much slower, limited to the speed of sound in the stick. He just wants me to respond, so I'll oblige.
2012-08-06 11:43:09 PM
1 votes:

Dadoody: Aperture science:
We do what me must
Because we can.


I'm not even AZN
2012-08-06 11:30:14 PM
1 votes:

Lordserb: Token Anarchist: ple bemoan the costs?!? farking savages.

I think it's more about spending the money on things that will have a greater effect on solving national problems. Don't get me wrong, this mars mission is beyond cool, but you can't tell someone he or she is wrong for wanting to have spent the money feeding the poor. Just a matter of perspective for some people I guess.


We could take the money they're spending on the Osprey that can't fly and the Abrams upgrade the Army doesn't want, give door-to-door meal service to all those hungry people...and STILL have enough leftover to go to Mars.
2012-08-06 11:20:03 PM
1 votes:

PunGent: Afa feeding the poor, was the number of Americans that starved to death last year higher than zero? Frankly, most of us could eat LESS...

Anyway, serious question: why did we go all Rube Goldberg on this? I'm delighted it worked, but didn't we get the last rover down a little more simply?


The other rovers were much smaller and lighter than this guy. Air bags and parachutes alone wouldn't cut it.
2012-08-06 11:03:59 PM
1 votes:

Lordserb: you can't tell someone he or she is wrong for wanting to have spent the money feeding the poor



I sure as fark can tell them they're wrong. For starters, I would point out the size of NASA's budget vs. the BILLIONS that are completely wasted in the defense industries every year. There are other places to cut way the fark before anyone gets anywhere close to touching NASA.
2012-08-06 11:02:48 PM
1 votes:

Lordserb: Token Anarchist: ple bemoan the costs?!? farking savages.

I think it's more about spending the money on things that will have a greater effect on solving national problems. Don't get me wrong, this mars mission is beyond cool, but you can't tell someone he or she is wrong for wanting to have spent the money feeding the poor. Just a matter of perspective for some people I guess.


There are a lot of hungry people in the world, and none of them are hungry because we went to the moon Mars. None of them are colder, and certainly none of them are dumber because we went to the moon Mars.

The thing is, if you took money away from NASA (correction: if you took MORE money away from NASA) it wouldn't be redirected into food for the poor. Most likely it would get dumped into defense spending. NASA's budget is less than a half-penny on the dollar, anyway.

But we can do both. We can do great science and feed the poor in this country. As a matter of fact, making sure that everyone is well-fed and well-educated from birth is probably the best way to ensure that we have a robust science program.
2012-08-06 11:01:18 PM
1 votes:

Lordserb: Token Anarchist: ple bemoan the costs?!? farking savages.

I think it's more about spending the money on things that will have a greater effect on solving national problems. Don't get me wrong, this mars mission is beyond cool, but you can't tell someone he or she is wrong for wanting to have spent the money feeding the poor. Just a matter of perspective for some people I guess.


Seems appropriate:
www.smbc-comics.com
2012-08-06 11:00:58 PM
1 votes:
$2.5B project, or about 10% of our annual air conditioning costs in Iraq and Afghanistan. Wanna know what I'd rather my tax money be spent on?

We landed a robot on Mars using a f*cking rocket-powered sky crane. I didn't even know we could do that on Earth.
2012-08-06 10:52:29 PM
1 votes:
I feel the highest form of patriotic.
2012-08-06 10:46:16 PM
1 votes:
I kept expecting to see a bowl of petunias falling too. "Oh no, not again"
2012-08-06 10:39:07 PM
1 votes:
You'd think science could increase the resolution. Somebody get to the CSI machine and enhance this video.
2012-08-06 10:24:44 PM
1 votes:
onfinite.com

/how many Curiosity threads have we had so far?
//it probably isn't anywhere near enough
2012-08-06 10:06:23 PM
1 votes:
Wait for the full res, 1600x1200
 
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