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Lander Zeroes in On Martian North Pole

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posted on May, 26 2008 @ 01:09 AM
Ahh what a relief; glad to see everything went according to the plans; thanks to every one for providing the details, updates and pictures. Let us look forward for more from Phoenix.

posted on May, 26 2008 @ 01:35 AM
reply to post by Toasty

one of the scientists/engineers at the phoenix team briefing shown on nasa tv said that the parachute and heat shield landed kilometers away from the lander, so I think it's unlikely that the bright object seen at one of the picture is actually one of those pieces. Perhaps its just a camera artifact.
Regarding the sphere", if you look at it from further away, you'll see its just a
rock, where the "ball" is the part of the rock facing the sun, and the "rock's shadow" is the part of the rock facing away from the sun.
I'm more intrigued about what is that soil composed of, and whats underneath it. what do you think? the polygons are strikingly similar to those found in permafrost, like the one on this photos of Siberia:

Was this polygonal pattern formed when ice melted or sublimated at the polygons borders and then freezed again? It looks like it, so this means there must be ice there, whether it is CO2 ice or H2O ice, or a mix of both. What do you think?

Mod Note: Forum Image Linking Policy – Please Review This Link.

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[edit on 26-5-2008 by Jbird]

[edit on 26-5-2008 by phoenixgo]

posted on May, 26 2008 @ 01:46 AM
reply to post by phoenixgo

Very interesting comparison there. I hope it's an apt comparison. When I first saw the terrain I thought, "Dang. Looks like a seabed."

What a great day.

And can we have a sticky post in this forum that explains how digital cameras work so we can whack the "OMG! B&W PIX! WTF!! NASA SUX" people over the head with it?

posted on May, 26 2008 @ 01:57 AM
reply to post by watchZEITGEISTnow

Funny that you assume that NASA is lying, when without them, you wouldn't even know what existed beyond the clouds. 99% of everything you know about space comes from NASA or scientists doing research that share knowledge with them. So where do you draw the line about what they tell us is 'real' and what they are 'lying' about? And what level of knowledge do you possess that allows you to determine this? Please let me know so I can too tell the difference between the real and unreal.

Wouldn't it be better for NASA to, instead of fudging the facts, not mention anything about a mission at all? Or provide images that are instead of having to be edited, not include any of the 'secret' stuff in the first place? If I was trying to hide something from the public, I wouldn't be feeding them clues in apparently photoshoped images.

Back on topic, I see that they have released a few false colour images. Looks very surreal. I was hoping to see a little ice up there, but we may have to wait for the Martian winter before that happens. Hopefully they will be able to give us some true colour images from the digging arm camera shortly too.

reply to post by phoenixgo

Thanks for letting me know about the locations of the heat shield and parachute, I unfortunately couldn't get the audio from the press conference.

Those polygon patterns are very strange indeed and it is fascinating that we find almost the same patterns here in cold conditions. I read that they think its due to the ice fracturing the ground when the winter sets in. Doesn't that part of the planet become incased in ice in winter? I think that maybe the cause of the cracks, when the ice melt and refreezes in the cracks. Just a guess though.

[edit on 26-5-2008 by Toasty]

posted on May, 26 2008 @ 02:12 AM

Originally posted by Horza
Who knows about the technology/techniques they are using for colouring these photos?

In the image "false_color_postcard" there is green tinge in the top left hand corner.

In the top left hand corner there is a green/blue tinge to the rocks.

Is this a rendering/colouring artefact?

[edit on 26/5/08 by Horza]

FYI I understand that this image is a false colour image ... lol

But is this supposed to be a realistic colour representation?

I did a bit of research but didn't find much info that helped.

posted on May, 26 2008 @ 02:23 AM
reply to post by Toasty

Hey Toasty,

I found this:

Possible thermokarst and alas formation in Utopia Planitia, Mars

Polygon formations on Mars

There is a lot of evidence to suggest there is water isn't there ... If this was found on Earth, there would be no question what so ever ... But we still need the cold hard facts (no pun intended)

posted on May, 26 2008 @ 03:00 AM
here's another photo of polygon terrain here on earth, this one I think, more similar to what we have seen in the phoenix photos:

original image:

this one was taken on Antarctica's dry valleys, the place that most scientists think is the most similar to mars on earth. Here's something from Wikipedia about the dry valleys:

The Dry Valleys are so named because of their extremely low humidity and their lack of snow or ice cover. Together, at 4800 square kilometers, they constitute around 2% of the continent,[2] and form the largest relatively ice-free region in Antarctica. The valley floors are covered with a loose gravelly material, in which sand-wedge polygons may be observed.
dry valleys, wikipedia article

(image tags)

[edit on 26-5-2008 by Jbird]

posted on May, 26 2008 @ 07:52 AM
reply to post by Horza

I don't know what was there before, but now that NASA page says:

This is an approximate-color image taken shortly after landing by the spacecraft's Surface Stereo Imager, inferred from two color filters, a violet, 450-nanometer filter and an infrared, 750-nanometer filter.

So, not only is this a false colour image, it was also probably made like the RGB colour images from HiRISE, based on a synthetic channel created by numerically manipulating one of the two channels available.

It serves only to give an idea of the different colours, the real colours may be (and probably are) different.

posted on May, 26 2008 @ 01:20 PM
Image of the Lander and parachute in free fall.

Taken from the MRO.

Sorry for the poor quality, it's a screen capture from the briefing today.
No image on the MRO site, yet.

posted on May, 26 2008 @ 01:47 PM
reply to post by Jbird


Really amazing how they managed that shot. I think it's great how we can leverage the assets in orbit around Mars to assist in unrelated missions.

I hope the hi-res version is posted soon.

posted on May, 26 2008 @ 01:54 PM
Official image released

Is it me, or does there seem to be more detail in my screen capture ? strange.

[edit on 26-5-2008 by Jbird]

posted on May, 26 2008 @ 03:25 PM
Much betta' !
Phoenix released its parachute at an altitude of about 12.6 kilometers (7.8 miles) and a velocity of 1.7 times the speed of sound.

The HiRISE, acquired this image on May 25, 2008, at 4:36 p.m. Pacific Time (7:36 p.m. Eastern Time). It is a highly oblique view of the Martian surface, 26 degrees above the horizon, or 64 degrees from the normal straight-down imaging of Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. The image has a scale of 0.76 meters per pixel.

This image has been brightened to show the patterned surface of Mars in the background.

[edit on 26-5-2008 by Jbird]

posted on May, 26 2008 @ 07:54 PM
I had posted this image in another thread but I think it belongs here too.

Latest image from the lander, I think it is from the other side of the site.

This could be the heat shield or chute

posted on May, 26 2008 @ 07:59 PM
They just uploaded more images.

posted on May, 26 2008 @ 10:45 PM
reply to post by 1freelectron

Just noticed that pic to. That is definitely 'something'. My guess is the chute, but its a bit hard to tell. If the heat shield and parachute are supposed to be kilometers away, then what we are looking at seems too big to be the heat shield, so my guess is parachute.

posted on May, 27 2008 @ 12:09 AM
reply to post by ArMaP

Thanks mate!

That helped explain it for me

Now all we need is the real colour images

posted on May, 27 2008 @ 02:36 AM

Originally posted by Jbird
Much betta' !

[edit on 26-5-2008 by Jbird]

Jbird, wow! amazing image, a space craft imaging the decent of an another space craft on a different planet. Thanks a lot for sharing it.

If any one missed the landing session, here is a video which shows the highlights with artists conception.

This video includes highlights from the entry, descent and landing phase as Mars Phoenix Lander touched down on the Red Planet on May 25, 2008.

Click here for the video

posted on May, 27 2008 @ 08:30 AM
reply to post by Toasty

The thing in that photo is the backshell. The backshell is cone-shaped, and the lander was tucked up inside of it until a few seconds before landing when the lander released itself from the shell (at about 1000 meters of altitude). You can see the backshell separation in the video in Enceladus' post above.

I think the parachute is supposed to be still attached to the backshell, but I don't see it in this photo -- Maybe it's to the left (out of frame) or it landed behind the backshell.

Like you said, it could be the heat shield, but that was separated more than 2 minutes before landing, so I would thing it ended up far from the landing site (out of picture range), but I suppose it could have landed close to Phoenix's landing site.

The lander separated from the backshell and parachute early enough so the chute (or backshell for that matter) would not end up on top of the lander. A lander covered with a parachute would be a bad thing.

[edit on 5/27/2008 by Soylent Green Is People]

posted on May, 27 2008 @ 01:16 PM
They have an MRO image of phoenix on the deck now!

[edit on 27-5-2008 by fatdeeman]

posted on May, 27 2008 @ 01:42 PM
More sweet MRO/HiRISE pics of Phoenix...

Parachuting in in front of a crater ->

Phoenix, shield and 'chute/backplate on surface ->

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