The Surface Stereo Imager onboard NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander captures a scene with three different filters. The images are sent to Earth in black and white and the color is added by mission scientists.
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How Phoenix Creates Color Images (Animation)

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This simple animation shows how a color image is made from images taken by Phoenix.

The Surface Stereo Imager captures the same scene with three different filters. The images are sent to Earth in black and white and the color is added by mission scientists.

By contrast, consumer digital cameras and cell phones have filters built in and do all of the color processing within the camera itself.

The Phoenix Mission is led by the University of Arizona, Tucson, on behalf of NASA. Project management of the mission is by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. Spacecraft development is by Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Denver.

Photojournal Note: As planned, the Phoenix lander, which landed May 25, 2008 23:53 UTC, ended communications in November 2008, about six months after landing, when its solar panels ceased operating in the dark Martian winter.

Image details

ID#:
PIA11028

Date added:
2008-08-04

Target:
Mars

Mission:
Phoenix

Spacecraft:
Phoenix Mars Lander

Instruments:
Surface Stereo Imager (SSI)

Rating:



Views:
1,123

Full-Res TIFF:
PIA11028.tif (1.55 MB)

Full-Res JPG:
PIA11028.jpg (0.06 MB)

Image credit:
NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Arizona