This frame from a series of images shows NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander's telltale instrument waving in the Martian wind. Documenting the telltale's movement helps mission scientists and engineers determine what the wind is like on Mars.
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Telltale Instrument Waving in the Martian Wind

This series of images show Phoenix's telltale instrument waving in the Martian wind. Documenting the telltale's movement helps mission scientists and engineers determine what the wind is like on Mars.

On the day these images were taken, one of the images seemed to be "out-of-phase" with other images, possibly indicating a dust devil occurrence. Preliminary analysis of the images taken right before and after the passing of this possible dust devil indicates winds from the west at 7 meters per second. The image taken during the possible dust devil shows 11 meters per second wind from the south.

These images were taken by the lander's Surface Stereo Imager (SSI) on the 136th Martian day, or sol, of the mission (Oct. 12, 2008). Phoenix's telltale is part of the Canadian Space Agency's meteorological package on the lander.

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#:
PIA11235

Date added:
2008-10-16

Target:
Mars

Mission:
Phoenix

Spacecraft:
Phoenix Mars Lander

Instruments:
Surface Stereo Imager (SSI)

Rating:



Views:
1,134

Full-Res TIFF:
PIA11235.tif (0.03 MB)

Full-Res JPG:
PIA11235.jpg (0 MB)

Image credit:
NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Arizona/Texas A&M University