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  JAXA's Kaguya (Selene) Moon mission

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Author Topic:   JAXA's Kaguya (Selene) Moon mission
Robert Pearlman
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posted 09-13-2007 10:52 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
From SPACE.com:
Kaguya Spacecraft Rockets Towards the Moon

quote:
A Japanese spacecraft touted to be the largest aimed at the moon since NASA's Apollo era rocketed into space late Thursday on an ambitious mission to study the origins of Earth's nearest neighbor.

The three-ton Kaguya lunar orbiter rode its H-2A rocket moonward at about 9:31 p.m. EDT (0131 Sept. 13 GMT), though it was Friday morning at Japan's island-based Tanegashima Space Center launch site. The probe was slated to circle the Earth twice before beginning a five-day trek to the moon, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) has said.

Formally known as SELENE, short for SELenological and ENgineering Explorer, Kaguya carries 14 science instruments and two small microsatellites to make detailed maps of the moon's surface, probe its interior and study the lunar gravitational field.


spaced out
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posted 09-14-2007 05:43 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for spaced out   Click Here to Email spaced out     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I was having a look at the website for the Kaguya spacecraft and was very pleased to see that it is carrying an HDTV camera. They mention explicitly that it can be used to film the Earthrise.

I honestly haven't heard much about this probe but I have a feeling that when the first HDTV images of Earthrise from lunar orbit are relayed back from this satellite they are going to become some of the most famous images in recent space history.

Seeing modern HD images of the moon from orbit is going to be amazing, and you can sure they're going to be shown on every news broadcast in the world.

mmmoo
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posted 10-09-2007 06:06 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for mmmoo   Click Here to Email mmmoo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The JAXA spacecraft has now entered lunar orbit, and sent back the first images. Although the images are not spectacular, they were just taken to monitor the antenna.

To see them, scroll down to bottom of this page.

Thanks

Mike Constantine
http://moonpans.com

Scott
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posted 10-09-2007 11:44 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Scott   Click Here to Email Scott     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Here is a one minute video of Earth taken with Kayuga's HDTV camera while it traveled to the Moon. The online version is not full resolution of course but neat nonetheless.

spaced out
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posted 11-07-2007 05:59 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for spaced out   Click Here to Email spaced out     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Just noticed that a new video was posted on Oct 30. It starts with about 25 seconds of Japanese text but then shows two fairly long shots of the lunar landscape passing underneath the spacecraft. Takes you back 30+ years!

See the clip here. It's the top one that shows just text (V-044-0017). Sadly it's not in HD.

Scott
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posted 11-07-2007 06:27 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Scott   Click Here to Email Scott     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thanks, Chris!

Here's a Kaguya link I found which shows still images at HDTV resolution.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 11-13-2007 08:43 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Image Taking of Earth-Rise by HDTV

quote:
This still image was cut out from a moving image (tele shot) taken by the HDTV onboard the KAGUYA at 12:07 p.m. on November 7, 2007 (Japan Standard Time, JST,) then sent to the JAXA Usuda Deep Space Center.

In the image, the Moon's surface is near the South Pole, and we can see the Australian Continent (center left) and the Asian Continent (lower right) on the Earth. (In this image, the upper side of the Earth is the Southern Hemisphere, thus the Australian Continent looks upside-down.)


Scott
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posted 11-13-2007 09:15 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Scott   Click Here to Email Scott     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
OMG. When I first saw your post here Robert I assumed it was a Photoshop creation by a cSer. But it is real. Amazing. Beautiful.

spaced out
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posted 11-13-2007 09:38 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for spaced out   Click Here to Email spaced out     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Great stuff, although to be pedantic Robert's image above is actually of the 'Earth-set' near the South pole.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 11-13-2007 09:59 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Here's the video of Earth-rise and Earth-set:

For a higher resolution version of the same, see the video link on JAXA's website.

robsouth
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posted 11-13-2007 06:37 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for robsouth     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
That is one amazing image, absolutely out of this world!

gliderpilotuk
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posted 11-14-2007 02:06 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for gliderpilotuk   Click Here to Email gliderpilotuk     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
This is inspirational stuff - just like being there. How high is the spacecraft orbiting?

Paul

robsouth
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posted 11-14-2007 06:16 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for robsouth     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
This is how it should look.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 11-14-2007 07:22 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by gliderpilotuk:
How high is the spacecraft orbiting?
According to JAXA, Kaguya is 100 km (62 miles) above the Moon.

spaced out
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posted 11-14-2007 08:02 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for spaced out   Click Here to Email spaced out     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by robsouth:
This is how it should look.

In space I guess you can fly in attitude you want so there's no particular reason why the camera/viewer should be feet down when passing over the North pole and head down when passing 'under' the South pole.

I assume 'down' there in Sydney you wouldn't stand on your heads to a polar-orbiting satellite pass over the 'right way up'.

NC Apollo Fan
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posted 11-14-2007 10:36 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for NC Apollo Fan   Click Here to Email NC Apollo Fan     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Hey guys -

I just noticed something. This is obviously a poor fake - where are the stars in the sky? Talk about mediocrity - they have made the same mistake that we made three decades ago! When are we all going to get our respective acts together on faking lunar missions?

Jonathan

Tomy1
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posted 11-14-2007 11:26 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Tomy1   Click Here to Email Tomy1     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Hopefully pictures will be taken of all 6 lunar landing sites and the "hoax" will finally be laid to rest!

MarylandSpace
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posted 11-14-2007 12:44 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for MarylandSpace   Click Here to Email MarylandSpace     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The chalkdust on my monitor makes it appear that stars are in the image. . . so, there are stars! (just kidding)

The images are just awesome.

Thanks, as always to Rob and others, for making our dreams come true.

Garry

cddfspace
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posted 11-14-2007 03:15 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for cddfspace   Click Here to Email cddfspace     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Awesome! Do they have plans on taking images of the landing sites? At 62 miles away, how close will the views look?

CDDFSPACE

spaced out
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posted 11-14-2007 04:09 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for spaced out   Click Here to Email spaced out     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I'd be surprised if the cameras have a powerful-enough combination of lenses and resolution to see anything significant at the landing sites but I could be wrong.

In any case I'm sure they will release high-def stills of those area once the probe has passed over them. Still be interesting to see Hadley Rille and the like.

robsouth
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posted 11-14-2007 07:37 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for robsouth     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by spaced out:
In space I guess you can fly in attitude you want...

...assume 'down' there in Sydney you wouldn't stand on your heads to a polar-orbiting satellite pass over the 'right way up'.


Very true but it's nice to see Australia looking as it should. Sydney is on the East coast afterall!

dsenechal
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posted 11-14-2007 08:19 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for dsenechal   Click Here to Email dsenechal     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I have a question (or perhaps an observation) as to HD resolution vs. the old Apollo Hasselblad images. According to the JAXA web site, the Kaguya imager is 1920 x 1080, which would make sense since that's the resolution of full HDTV. So, that's around 2 megapixels. By contrast, the resolution of a Hasselblad image exceeds 30 mp. So, even though the Kaguya images appear spectacular, it would seem that their resolution is still far, far less than the 40-year-old pictures from Apollo (although color accuracy is probably higher). Any thoughts? Dave

spaced out
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posted 11-15-2007 02:08 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for spaced out   Click Here to Email spaced out     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The high-definition digital images are of course way lower in resolution than Hasselblad stills from the Apollo missions but the comparison should really be with the movie cameras used in orbit.

Maybe Mark of Spacecraft Films could chip-in with his opinion?

Philip
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posted 11-15-2007 09:48 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Philip   Click Here to Email Philip     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Even more amazing is the fact that these images are coming from a Japanese spacecraft. If in Europe or US, the spaceflight program won't get the attention/funds it needs in the future, the Moon might become an Asian affaire...

Philip
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posted 11-19-2007 11:49 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Philip   Click Here to Email Philip     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Both Apollo 15 + 16 landing sites are listed (Word document) as lunar sites to be used in calibrating the Japanese spacecraft instruments!

robsouth
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posted 11-19-2007 11:22 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for robsouth     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Just watched the video for the first time, like someone has already mentioned it's just like being there. That view is breath taking.

Scott
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posted 11-21-2007 09:50 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Scott   Click Here to Email Scott     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
A new movie which shows some of the far side has been released.

Around the 30 second mark, Tsiolkovsky Crater appears on the horizon.

gliderpilotuk
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posted 11-21-2007 11:02 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for gliderpilotuk   Click Here to Email gliderpilotuk     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Scott:
Around the 30 second mark, Tsiolkovsky Crater appears on the horizon.
Has anyone spotted the alien bases yet?

Paul

Philip
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posted 11-21-2007 11:06 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Philip   Click Here to Email Philip     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
No Paul, but we might get images of the Apollo 15 + 16 landing sites.
In 50 years spaceflight, the best images were those taken by Viking on Mars and when we saw those Viking spacecraft from orbit, that was really cool!
Hopefully same deal for Apollo

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