Saturday, December 10, 2011

HiView, The Google Earth For Mars

We can all now explore Mars from the comfort of our own homes, courtesy of the University of Arizona.
HiView is the best way to explore HiRISE images of the Martian surface at the full resolution of the imagery. Tracks of boulders that have fallen down crater walls, delicate rays of ejecta from fresh impact craters, and the unearthly formations created by carbon dioxide ice on the Martian south pole are just a few of the things that are waiting to be discovered by anyone using a tool like HiView with HiRISE imagery. 
Once the application has been downloaded to your computer, all that is needed to get started after launching the application, is a quick drag and drop of any of the links to the JP2 files on the HiRISE website to the HiView application window, and HiView will take care of the rest. No downloading of multigigabyte files required!
 The program hopes to get more people interested in space exploration.
"The pictures are beautiful, but there's real science in there," said Castalia. "That's part of what HiView allows people to do is to explore the science that's there in the imagery. People can really experience what it means to be involved in a Mars mission. All you have to do is get in there and explore."
Definitely cheaper than space travel. But not nearly as cool.

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