Grab your 3-D glasses and prepare to be amazed (and addicted!) The team from the remarkable HiRISE Camera on board the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter has released a collection of 3-D images — 362 of ’em — of Mars surface. The incredible power of this camera can resolve features as small as one meter, or 40 inches, across, and in looking at these 3-D images, it’s almost like being there. Above is one of my favorites from this collection, Arabia Terra. “It’s really remarkable to see Martian rocks and features on the scale of a person in 3-D,” said Alfred McEwen of UA’s Lunar and Planetary Laboratory, HiRISE principal investigator. “The level of detail is just much, much greater than anything previously seen from orbit.”
How was the team able to create so many 3-D images? And how can you get or make a pair of 3-D glasses?
Usually, creating 3-D anaglyphs is a tedious and time-consuming process. But the HiRISE team was able to automate some of the software used in processing the images so two images of a stereo pair could be fed into the software “pipeline” and correlated automatically. So look for even more 3-D images in the future. But 362 should keep most of us busy, for awhile anyway!
Here, spectacular layers are exposed on the floor of a large canyon in the Valles Marineris system called Candor Chasma which is about 2-and-a-half miles, or 4 kilometers deep. The canyon may once have been filled to its rim by sedimentary layers of sand and dust-sized particles, but these have since eroded, leaving patterns of elongated hills and layered terrain that has been turned and folded in many angles and directions.
If you don’t have a pair of 3-D glasses, here’s a link to a list of several sources of finding some, or you can even make your own. Sometimes, 3-D glasses can be found for free on cereal boxes, or in children’s books or other sources.
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Here is a 3-D version of Becquerel Crater, and the layered terrain of which we wrote about last week, which was formed by cyclical climate change.
See the entire collection of HiRISE 3-D’s here.
Source: U of Arizona