Astronomy Picture of the Day
August 18, 2013

Mutual Event, in the Space of Mars
Mutual Event, in the Space of Mars

Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Malin Space Science Systems/Texas A&M Univ. and Dr Paolo C. Fienga/LXTT/IPF for the additional process. and color.

These 6 (six) images, which were all taken by the NASA - Mars Exploration Rover (MER) - Mars Laboratory - "Curiosity", show us the two small moons of the Red Planet moments before (---> the three left - Sx - frames ) and after (---> the three right - Dx - ones) the larger Martian moon, Phobos, occulted the smaller one, such as Deimos.


This so-called "Mutual Event" occurred on August, 1st, 2013. On each side, the top image is earlier in time than the ones beneath it. In order to record this "Occultation", the NASA - Mars Exploration Rover (MER) - Mars Laboratory - "Curiosity" used the Telephoto-Lens Camera (which is an additional instrument available to the Rover's Mast Camera - or "MastCam", for short).


These six frames (which are all Original NASA - Mars Exploration Rover (MER) - Mars Laboratory - "Curiosity" Original b/w images published on the NASA - Planetary Photojournal and identified by the ID n. PIA 17353) have been additionally processed, Gamma corrected and then colorized in Absolute Natural Colors (such as the colors that a normal - meaning "in the average" - human eye would actually perceive if someone were on the Surface of Mars, near the NASA - Mars Exploration Rover (MER) - Mars Laboratory - "Curiosity" , and then, using a small telescope, looked up in the Sky, towards the Martian Moons Deimos and Phobos), by using an original technique created - and, in time, dramatically improved - by the Lunar Explorer Italia Team.



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