Re: Has NASA's MESSENGER gone color blind?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Mark Thornton, Jan 20, 2008.

  1. BradGuth wrote:
    > "Has NASA's MESSENGER gone color blind?"
    > Apparently "Mercury's unseen side now seen!" is only available in
    > those colors of gray. After all this time, and of our hard earned
    > loot spent, I'm actually rather disappointed in NASA's MESSENGER. Are
    > we ever going to see the full visible spectrum scope and photographic
    > color depth and contrast worth of our digital images, or merely as
    > limited as to whatever gray pixels they see fit to share in B&W and of
    > such limited DR to boot?


    The imagers on space probes are usually designed for scientific purposes
    and not generating eye candy. This usually means a sensor with a colour
    filter wheel. Creating colour images requires post processing which
    isn't trivial --- with the probe moving you have to align the images for
    each colour. The colour response is also often not well suited to
    producing what our eyes would interpret as true colour. I think NASA has
    admitted that this last aspect results in poor PR and that future
    sensors might include more suitable filters in the set.

    Note also that sci.op-research is about Operations Research and nothing
    to do with optics.

    Mark Thornton
     
    Mark Thornton, Jan 20, 2008
    #1
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  2. Mark Thornton

    Pat Flannery Guest

    Mark Thornton wrote:
    >
    > The imagers on space probes are usually designed for scientific
    > purposes and not generating eye candy. This usually means a sensor
    > with a colour filter wheel. Creating colour images requires post
    > processing which isn't trivial --- with the probe moving you have to
    > align the images for each colour. The colour response is also often
    > not well suited to producing what our eyes would interpret as true
    > colour. I think NASA has admitted that this last aspect results in
    > poor PR and that future sensors might include more suitable filters in
    > the set.



    In the case of MESSENGER, the photos are across a wide part of the
    optical spectrum via several filters.
    So they will be putting together color images of the planet from this
    data fairly shortly.
    The main point of the mission is to determine the elemental make-up of
    the surface of Mercury by how the various minerals and rocks reflect
    sunlight in various parts of the spectrum, via multiple images of the
    same area through all of the optical filters This allows maps to be
    generated, such as Clementine generated of the Moon using the same
    technique. You can look at the Clementine lunar mineral maps here:
    http://www.lpi.usra.edu/lunar/missions/clementine/images/

    Pat
     
    Pat Flannery, Jan 20, 2008
    #2
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  3. Mark Thornton

    robert casey Guest


    >
    > The imagers on space probes are usually designed for scientific purposes
    > and not generating eye candy.


    Don't discount "eye candy" for the public, aka taxpayers.

    Anyway, in today's local paper I saw a "color" picture of Mercury. The
    color may just have been photoshopped, as the entire planet was a light
    tan hue.
     
    robert casey, Jan 22, 2008
    #3
  4. Mark Thornton

    Pat Flannery Guest

    robert casey wrote:
    >
    >>
    >> The imagers on space probes are usually designed for scientific
    >> purposes and not generating eye candy.

    >
    > Don't discount "eye candy" for the public, aka taxpayers.



    The three-filter color approach movie to the planet was done
    specifically for public consumption by NASA.
    This is probably a frame from it:
    http://messenger.jhuapl.edu/gallery/sciencePhotos/image.php?gallery_id=2&image_id=132

    Pat
     
    Pat Flannery, Jan 22, 2008
    #4
  5. Mark Thornton

    John Navas Guest

    On Tue, 22 Jan 2008 16:36:32 -0500, robert casey <>
    wrote in <>:

    >> The imagers on space probes are usually designed for scientific purposes
    >> and not generating eye candy.

    >
    >Don't discount "eye candy" for the public, aka taxpayers.


    NASA doesn't -- see the websites and many images released to the public.

    --
    Best regards,
    John Navas
    Panasonic DMC-FZ8 (and several others)
     
    John Navas, Jan 22, 2008
    #5
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