The Weird and Wonderful Gadgets of the Phoenix Mars Mission

MARDIThis small red-eyed camera is the Mars Descent Imager aboard the Phoenix. Its 1,024 x 1,024 pixels CCD and refractive optics will capture 66º wide-angle color images of the landing site —all while plummeting from 5 miles above the planet's surface. Launched today to explore the red planet's arctic, Phoenix is loaded with a collection of heavy-duty weird-looking gadgets like this.[Phoenix Mars Mission and [Lockheed Martin and NASA]

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