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Post Info TOPIC: Mariner 4


L

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TheMariner 4 spacecraftflew by Mars on July 14 and July 15, 1965.

MARINER ENCOUNTERS MARS



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L

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Mariner 4 spacecraft
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The Mariner 4 spacecraft flew by Mars on July 14 and July 15, 1965. Planetary science mode was turned on at 15:41:49 UT on July 14. The camera sequence started at 00:18:36 UT on July 15 (7:18:49 p.m. EST on July 14) and 21 pictures using alternate red and green filters, plus 21 lines of a 22nd picture were taken. The images covered a discontinuous swath of Mars starting near 40 N, 170 E, down to about 35 S, 200 E, and then across to the terminator at 50 S, 255 E, representing about 1% of the planet's surface.
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L

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First TV Image of Mars

A 'real-time data translator' machine converted a Mariner 4 digital image data into numbers printed on strips of paper. Too anxious to wait for the official processed image, employees from the Voyager Telecommunications Section at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, attached these strips side by side to a display panel and hand coloured the numbers like a paint-by-numbers picture. The completed image was framed and presented to JPL director, William H. Pickering. Mariner 4 was launched on November 28, 1964 and journeyed for 228 days to the Red Planet, providing the first close-range images of Mars.
The spacecraft carried a television camera and six other science instruments to study the Martian atmosphere and surface. The 22 photographs taken by Mariner revealed the existence of lunar type craters upon a desert-like surface. After completing its mission, Mariner 4 continued past Mars to the far side of the Sun. On Dec. 20, 1967, all operations of the spacecraft were ended.

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For the longest time I had seen this framed image entitled "The First TV Image of Mars" in an out of the way place at JPL. I loved taking people there showing them this low res image and how it had been made by colouring numbers that were stapled to a wall. When I got to curate an exhibition about data and art, I had to have this in it.
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Mariner 4 (together with Mariner 3 known as Mariner-Mars 1964) was the fourth in a series of spacecraft, launched on November 28, 1964, intended for planetary exploration in a flyby mode and performed the first successful flyby of the planet Mars, returning the first pictures of the Martian surface.
The spacecraft flew by Mars on July 14 and July 15, 1965. Planetary science mode was turned on at 15:41:49 UT on July 14.

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