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Uranus System Imaging
Ian R
post Jun 6 2015, 03:09 AM
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Look at the equatorial band of scalloped clouds!



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antipode
post Dec 17 2015, 06:14 AM
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More astonishing AO imaging from Keck II and Gemini North. This blows my mind.





http://arxiv.org/pdf/1512.05009.pdf


Imagine what the ELT class scopes might offer!

Where's that Uranus orbiter! tongue.gif
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MarcF
post Jan 23 2016, 09:57 PM
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Voyager Mission Celebrates 30 Years Since Uranus:

http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news.php?feature=4827

And nobody knows how long we still have to wait until next mission to this amazing world !

http://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/jpeg/PIA01391.jpg
Reason for edit: Please don't embed huge inline images, embed and link from a thumbnail. Thanks. -mod
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Bjorn Jonsson
post Jan 24 2016, 03:10 PM
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Today is the Voyager 2 Uranus 30 year flyby anniversary. Below are my recently reprocessed versions of the highest resolution Voyager 2 images of Titania and Oberon. They are from an unfinished image processing project I'm working on (Miranda, Ariel and Umbriel are unfinished and I might add color versions of Titania and Oberon).

First is Titania. The upper image is rendered from a sharpened stack of three polar maps. One additional image is available but it is too blurred to be useful for stacking. The original images were obtained on January 24, 1986 around 09:11 at a range of ~500,000 km.

The second one is from a stack of two maps. The original images were obtained on January 24, 1986 around 14:17 at a range of ~370,000 km.


Attached Image



Attached Image


The upper image is probably the sharpest version I have seen of these images. The lower one is comparable to Ted's version - interestingly parts of my version look slightly sharper than Ted's image whereas other parts look slightly sharper in Ted's version. I made no attempt to show Uranusshine on the nightside; Ted has done this at least as well as I could do.

And here's Oberon. This is from a sharpened stack of two polar maps. I could have used two additional images but they are fuzzy and would probably have degraded the final result. The original images were obtained at a range of ~665,000 km on January 24, 1986 around 08:50.


Attached Image


All of these images are enlarged relative to the original images. North is to the right (and slightly down) in all of the images. These images are not exactly detailed and really show the need for a new visit to the Uranus system. In a sense these bodies represent a 'transition' from Saturn's icy satellites to bodies like Pluto and Charon, all of which after the successful New Horizons flyby are far better explored than Uranus' satellites.
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nprev
post Jan 24 2016, 03:51 PM
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..."not exactly detailed", but stunning nonetheless. smile.gif Beautiful work.



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JRehling
post Jan 25 2016, 07:26 PM
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A world that these images remind me of, visually, is Mercury. Obviously, the compositions are radically different, but they share a quality one doesn't see (often) in images of, say, the Moon, Callisto, or Rhea, which is that craters seem to excavate both dark and light material, depending in some way that may pertain to lateral variations in composition. And that indicates something rather interesting about primordial formation processes. So, it's interesting to see that on both Mercury, which is by far the solar system's most massive body without a multi-gigayear history of volatile and volcanic reworking of the surface, and these much smaller bodies with completely different composition.
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Bjorn Jonsson
post Jan 26 2016, 12:18 AM
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Interesting comparison to Mercury. The albedo variations of the surface material are interesting, especially on Oberon where both dark and light material seems to have been excavated in several craters. The resolution is frustratingly low though and makes it difficult to tell exactly what is happening (I wonder if the Voyager 2 imaging sequence would have been designed with image stacking/superresolution in mind had those image processing techniques been common back in 1986).

On Titania dark stuff in craters is far more rare than on Oberon. However, Titania's chasm reminds me of Ariel, Charon and Tethys. Of course detailed comparisons are diffcult since Charon and Tethys have been vastly better imaged than Titania. Ariel has also been compared to Charon but even though Ariel is considerably better imaged than Titania the imaging coverage there is far worse than at Charon. We really need to revisit Uranus!
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tedstryk
post Jan 26 2016, 02:23 PM
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Sorry, I'm just finding this now. Excellent work, Bjorn. I think part of the differences between these reflect the fact that I did a little more to suppress noise, although this possibly obliterated marginal detail (but I thought it looked better). Here are my versions of these images.

Attached Image

Attached Image

Attached Image


The Oberon image is a complete reworking from scratch. Unlike Bjorn, I used all four images (though desmearing was required), and the two lower quality images are weighted as only a combined 20% of the final product.


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Astroboy
post Jun 11 2016, 04:07 AM
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A gif of the 1/23/1986 Titania phase angle coverage using violet and green frames for my fellow UMSFites. The green channel is synthetic.



Non-rotated version:



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Astroboy
post Aug 28 2016, 07:51 PM
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Not as clean looking as the first image in this thread, but here's my own quick, dirty, kinda bad take on a color Uranus with one ring. The color is OGB and the ring was exposed by stacking the OGB frames along with most of the other images from the same filter/exposure cycle, none of which were exposed for rings/faint objects (besides the atmosphere of course, which was obviously very faint out there). Since these cycles repeated as part of a movie sequence, one could technically create color ringed Uranus movies using real, simultaneously taken data.



The ring can actually be faintly seen in some normally exposed, uncombined images.


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Brian Burns
post Aug 29 2016, 05:04 AM
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Lots of great stuff in this thread!

I didn't realize how stormy Uranus could be - it's too bad there wasn't more activity when Voyager was there, or that it wasn't sensitive to IR - it would have made for some striking images.

I also hope a Uranus orbiter will happen someday, but in the meantime the next-generation telescopes should be amazing - it's hard to believe this was taken from Earth!

Attached Image


Near-equatorial waves from 2012-2014, from the paper that antipode linked - http://arxiv.org/pdf/1512.05009.pdf

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MichaelPoole
post Nov 30 2017, 02:33 PM
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QUOTE (Bjorn Jonsson @ Jan 24 2016, 04:10 PM) *
Today is the Voyager 2 Uranus 30 year flyby anniversary. Below are my recently reprocessed versions of the highest resolution Voyager 2 images of Titania and Oberon. They are from an unfinished image processing project I'm working on (Miranda, Ariel and Umbriel are unfinished and I might add color versions of Titania and Oberon).

First is Titania. The upper image is rendered from a sharpened stack of three polar maps. One additional image is available but it is too blurred to be useful for stacking. The original images were obtained on January 24, 1986 around 09:11 at a range of ~500,000 km.

The second one is from a stack of two maps. The original images were obtained on January 24, 1986 around 14:17 at a range of ~370,000 km.


Attached Image



Attached Image


The upper image is probably the sharpest version I have seen of these images. The lower one is comparable to Ted's version - interestingly parts of my version look slightly sharper than Ted's image whereas other parts look slightly sharper in Ted's version. I made no attempt to show Uranusshine on the nightside; Ted has done this at least as well as I could do.

And here's Oberon. This is from a sharpened stack of two polar maps. I could have used two additional images but they are fuzzy and would probably have degraded the final result. The original images were obtained at a range of ~665,000 km on January 24, 1986 around 08:50.


Attached Image


All of these images are enlarged relative to the original images. North is to the right (and slightly down) in all of the images. These images are not exactly detailed and really show the need for a new visit to the Uranus system. In a sense these bodies represent a 'transition' from Saturn's icy satellites to bodies like Pluto and Charon, all of which after the successful New Horizons flyby are far better explored than Uranus' satellites.


Can you please, please combine those high resolution black and white images with the color data? Mr. Stryk's images are good, but seem less sharp to me than yours (to be honest, I have long wished to make a moon/s of Uranus my computer desktop wallpaper, but no photos I found are really good for that task). I'd be really thankful.

By the way, are there any color, high resolution pictures of Miranda? I like this picture http://www.planetary.org/multimedia/space-...t-image-of.html but it is a BW one and this one is color https://www.jpl.nasa.gov/spaceimages/details.php?id=PIA00042 but low resolution. I realize there are probably none, but can the color data from the lower res pics be used on the high res pic? It seems to have been done here http://wanderingspace.net/wp-content/uploa.../11/miranda.jpg but the mosaic here is lower quality and very noticeably blurry on the left, unlike the BW mosaic on planetary.org. Thanks anyone in advance for answering.
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Phil Stooke
post Nov 30 2017, 03:27 PM
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If what you are asking for was easy it would have been done long ago. Because of time constraints, all the high resolution images were B/W. The color images were taken earlier, not just at lower resolution but also from a different direction. Overlaying the best color on the best B/W would need reprojection and would usually have an area which is not covered by color. Oberon might be the easiest one to do successfully. Artificial colorizing might give good results in the hands of a real artist like Damia Bouic.

Phil


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MichaelPoole
post Nov 30 2017, 03:39 PM
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QUOTE (Phil Stooke @ Nov 30 2017, 04:27 PM) *
If what you are asking for was easy it would have been done long ago. Because of time constraints, all the high resolution images were B/W. The color images were taken earlier, not just at lower resolution but also from a different direction. Overlaying the best color on the best B/W would need reprojection and would usually have an area which is not covered by color. Oberon might be the easiest one to do successfully. Artificial colorizing might give good results in the hands of a real artist like Damia Bouic.

Phil


I realize it is hard and thank you for explaining why. May I ask what process was probably used here http://wanderingspace.net/wp-content/uploa.../11/miranda.jpg ? The Miranda color data seems uniform enough to just project on the hi res image in my opinion https://www.jpl.nasa.gov/spaceimages/details.php?id=PIA00042 . It seems to me Miranda would be easiest, not Oberon. What about combining those 2 techniques, combining best color with best BW and colorizing the areas not covered by color to look like the areas with it?

Don't take me wrong, I don't want people to work their ass off for free just because I want a pretty wallpaper picture. But it's not about that, good full color pictures of the Uranian moons would be a blessing, and we will not get any more pictures until the 2030s at the very least, so processing old pictures is all we have. Besides, the moons of Uranus are neglected in the imagination of the public, with many people thinking that they're "boring" even if they have a crazy geology and possible ammonia water oceans underground simply because the pictures are not great and photogenic like those of Jovian moons or the moons of Saturn.
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JRehling
post Nov 30 2017, 04:28 PM
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I don't know on what schedule this might take place, but the new generation of larger ground based telescopes ought to be able to produce some impressive global maps of the uranian satellites at a resolution that will, to be sure, not match Voyager 2, but may be comprehensive and cover the entire surfaces with arbitrary spectral coverage.

It is particularly helpful that the four or five larger satellites are all co-located, so the same set of observations with no/little repointing can cover them all.

To speak to the capabilities, compare this image of Ganymede:

http://www.unmannedspaceflight.com/index.php?showtopic=8253

Uranus is about 4.3 times farther than Jupiter, but the ELT will have 7.9 times the aperture of the Hale Telescope that took that pictures, so the resolution per km will roughly double. Titania is about 1/3 the diameter of Ganymede, so the pictures of Titania, enlarged to the side of that Ganymede photo, will end up having about 1.5x worse resolution, which is still damned good. In fact, that will exceed the Voyager 2 resolution in many cases. And the ground-based telescopes can sit and wait for the uranian seasons to change. There are three telescopes in development that will radically (more than 2x) improve upon the largest existing telescopes.

Now, I'm sure these worlds aren't in anybody's top ten list of priorities, and I have no certain insights as to when they'll score some observation time, but it seems inevitable that such observations will eventually occur, and precede the next mission to arrive on the scene. The uranian satellites may even be among the higher priorities in the solar system, because telescopic mapping will not improve on Galileo/Europa Clipper/Cassini mapping of the major satellites of Jupiter and Saturn. Other worlds that could benefit from these capabilities will include Pallas, Juno, and Triton.

So lament not – the day of revelation (of the outer and smaller worlds) is coming.
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