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Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter Mission Status

  • Unprecedented image quality, resolution, coverage

  • Panchromatic and color images

  • Hundreds of full-resolution 20,000 x 40,000 pixel images

  • Color images up to 4,072 pixels wide, sub-meter scales

  • Thousands of high-resolution sub-scenes with 1 to 2 meters/pixel content

  • Hundreds of stereo pairs; production of Digital Elevation Models

  • Philosophy: “The People's Camera”

Launched in August of 2005, the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) is flying onboard the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) mission. HiRISE will investigate deposits and landforms resulting from geologic and climatic processes and assist in the evaluation of candidate landing sites. By combining very high resolution and signal-to-noise ratio with a large swath width, it is possible to image on a variety of scales down to 1 meter, a scale currently afforded only in glimpses by landers. HiRISE will offer such views over any selected region of Mars, providing a bridge between orbital remote sensing and landed missions. Stereo image pairs will be acquired over the highest-priority locations with a vertical precision of better than 25 cm per pixel.

User-friendly web tools will be available to both the science community and the public to view/analyze HiRISE images and to submit observation requests. Processed images will be released soon after acquisition to allow everyone to share in the scientific discovery process.

Partners in

NASA Quest

Technology Teacher

Smithsonian Institution

Mars Education Program

Understand the geologic and climatic processes and history of Mars, including origins, relative ages, and distributions of:

  • Channels and valleys

  • Former lakes and oceans

  • Recent gullies
  • Hydrothermal alteration

  • Eolian and polar deposits

  • Near-surface crusts and horizons

Virginia Gulick: HiRISE Public Outreach
Glenn Deardorff: Webwork
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