Mars Descent Imager (MARDI)





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The MARDI descent imaging and SSI color, stereoscopic and panoramic imaging will provide geologic context and the digital elevation models necessary for operating the RA.

MARDI begins operation after the aeroshell is jettisoned and acquires 20 descent images, providing geological context for the area around the landing site.

MARDI consists of a set of nine-element refractive optics and four surface-mounted, assembly-printed circuit boards connected by flexible cables. The optics have an f-ratio of 5.6 and a field of view of 65.9°. The detector is a Kodak KAI-1001: 1024×1024 (1018×1008 photoactive) with 9-µm pixels, 20% fill factor, interline transfer, and electronic shuttering. Exposure time is 4 ms. MARDI uses a Motorola DSP 56166 operating at 60 MHz, with 4 kB of program RAM, and 4 kB of data RAM. Data are digitized by a 12-bit analog-to-digital converter (ADC), and square-root encoding to 8 bits using 1.8:1 lossless Huffman first difference compression. The MARDI team will redo the MSP'01 calibration to verify functional performance and will provide a new calibration report to the Phoenix project in Phase C/D.