Phoenix Lander and Hardware
NASA/JPL/University of Arizona
Phoenix Lander and Hardware
PSP_008855_2485  Science Theme: Future Exploration/Landing Sites
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As the Phoenix Lander investigates the Martian surface, HiRISE continues to image it and its surroundings. This scene is oriented with north located approximately down. Illumination is from the upper right.

The false color subimage features three main pieces of hardware. The parachute attached by strings to the backshell is located at the top. To the lower left of the parachute is a large dark splotch and a smaller dark dot. The dark dot is the heat shield that protected the Phoenix Lander during its descent. The dark splotch probably formed where the heat shield first hit the surface. The lander itself is seen near the bottom. The solar panels are seen to extend approximately east-west. It is important to check that they extended fully after landing because they are responsible for powering Phoenix and its science operations. The darkness of the surface surrounding the lander is a result of the thrusters disturbing the soil as Phoenix descended.

Written by: Kelly Kolb   (18 July 2008)

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Acquisition date:16 June 2008 Local Mars time:15:04
Latitude (centered):68.207° Longitude (East):234.256°
Range to target site:319.5 km (199.7 miles)Original image scale range:32.0 cm/pixel (with 1 x 1 binning) so objects ~96 cm across are resolved
Map projected scale:25 cm/pixelMap projection:Polarstereographic
Emission angle:13.1° Phase angle:40.0°
Solar incidence angle:51°, with the Sun about 39° above the horizon Solar longitude:86.2°, Northern Spring

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For information about NASA and agency programs on the Web, visit: NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, Calif., manages the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington. Lockheed Martin Space Systems is the prime contractor for the project and built the spacecraft. The HiRISE camera was built by Ball Aerospace and Technology Corporation and is operated by the University of Arizona. The image data were processed using the U.S. Geological Survey’s ISIS3 software.