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The USGS Astrogeology Science Center is very active in Mars research, geology, cartography and mission support. Visit the links to the right to learn more about the team's work on the red planet.
USGS Role in the Future of Mars Explorationhttp://astrogeology.usgs.gov/about/mars-future
On August 5, the planetary science community breathed a sigh of relief when Curiosity made a perfect landing on Mars. With a new, healthy, and extremely capable rover on the surface of Mars, new…
Spirit MI Pancam Mergeshttp://astrogeology.usgs.gov/maps/mars-mer-mi-merged-products/spirit-mi-pancam-merges
1961: USGS Astrogeology's First Published Maphttp://astrogeology.usgs.gov/rpif/exhibits/astros-first-lunar-map
The race to the moon began on August 17, 1958, and the Soviet Union won. This isn't the opening line of an alternate history story; rather, it is an acknowledgment that more than one moon race…
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Apollo Grover Historical Photo: B1image/jpeg 14 MB
James Irwin (left) and David Scott (right) drive Grover.
Apollo Grover Historical Photo: B2image/jpeg 12 MB
James Irwin (left with checklist) and David Scott (right) drive Grover; closeup of seating area and camera.
Apollo Grover Historical Photo: B3image/jpeg 12 MB
James Irwin with chest-mounted camera and David Scott (not visible) drive Grover.
Apollo Grover Historical Photo: B4image/jpeg 16 MB
Charles Duke (left) and John Young (right) drive Grover; camera and transceiver covered in gold foil, fenders installed.
Apollo Grover Historical Photo: B5image/jpeg 9 MB
Charles Duke (background) and John Young (foreground) drive Grover with canyon in background; panoramic view.
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ISPRS 1999 Location and Geologic Settings for the three U. S. Mars Landersapplication/pdf 15 kB
Super resolution of the horizon at both Viking landing sites has revealed “new” features we use for triangulation, similar to the approach used during the Mars Pathfinder Mission. We propose…
ISPRS 2004 Automation in Mars Landing-Site Mapping and Rover Localizationapplication/pdf 603 kB
Our project aims to automate Mars mapping and localization using robotic stereo and descent imagery. Stereo vision is a wellstudied domain. However, most efforts aim only at a general scene; little…
ISPRS 2002 High Precision Landing Site Mapping and Rover Localization by Integrated Bundle Adjustment of MPF Surface Imagesapplication/pdf 2 MB
High-precision topographic information from all available data is crucial to many landing site geological and engineering applications. At the same time, precise navigation and localization of the…
ISPRS 2001 High Precision Landing Site Mapping and Rover Localization by Integrated Bundle Adjustment of Ground-Based Image Dataapplication/pdf 10 kB
High precision topographic information from all available data is critical to many landing site geological and engineering applications. Meanwhile, precise navigation and localization of the rover is…
ISPRS 1999 FIDO / APEX / Athena-Based Plans for Cartographic Products and Rover Localization Analysesapplication/pdf 18 kB
In this abstract we preview the acquisition of stereo image data and resultant cartographic products and rover localization studies associated with the Athena Precursor Experiment (APEX) on the 2001…
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Sol 392-396 Update On Curiosity From USGS Scientist Ken Herkenhoff: Waypoint 1Astrogeology News: 13 September 2013
The rover is in position to deploy the arm instruments on outcrops at Waypoint 1, so the weekend plan includes lots of APXS and MAHLI observations. So many contact and remote sensing observations…
Sol 113 update on Curiosity from USGS Scientist Ken Herkenhoff: The DrillAstrogeology News: 29 November 2012
I'm back on tactical operations today, this time as MAHLI/MARDI Payload Uplink Lead. The Sol 113 plan included further checkouts of the drill and other remote sensing, but no MAHLI or MARDI…
Sol 169 update on Curiosity from USGS Scientist Ken Herkenhoff: Staying PutAstrogeology News: 25 January 2013
I was MAHLI/MARDI uplink lead again today, planning images of potential drill targets. We still need more information before we can start drilling, and there are more tests to be done before the…
Sol 200 Update On Curiosity From USGS Scientist Ken Herkenhoff: Quiet DayAstrogeology News: 27 February 2013
I'm scheduled as MAHLI/MARDI uplink lead 4 days this week. The first planning day, for Sol 200, was rather quiet for me, with just a single MAHLI activity (pulling old images out of the camera's…
Sol 205 Update On Curiosity From USGS Scientist Ken Herkenhoff: Still RecoveringAstrogeology News: 5 March 2013
The engineering and instrument teams are working to set up MSL's "B" computer with all the parameter settings needed to resume science operations. It looks like this process will take all week, so…