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Teledyne DALSA sensors to guide rover on Mars

Teledyne DALSA has sent its sensors on another trip to Mars, embedded in special cameras used on a roving laboratory that will explore the planet’s surface.


December 12, 2011
by PLANT STAFF

WATERLOO, Ont.: Teledyne DALSA has sent its sensors on a trip to Mars, embedded in special cameras used on a roving laboratory launched Nov. 26 that will explore the planet’s surface.

The NASA-designed CCD sensors manufactured by Teledyne DALSA in Bromont, Que. will be part of the navigation and hazard avoidance systems on the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) Rover.

The Curiosity Rover will use four black and white Navcam cameras mounted on a pan/tilt mast two metres above the ground with a 45-degree field of view that will use visible light to gather panoramic, three-dimensional imagery providing a complementary view of the terrain.

The black and white Hazcams mounted on the lower portion of the front and rear of the vehicle safeguards the rover against getting lost or inadvertently crashing into unexpected obstacles, and works in tandem with software that allows the vehicle to make its own safety choices.

The cameras each have a 120-degree field of view and pairs of Hazcam images map out the shape of the terrain as far as three metres in front of the vehcile, in a wedge shape that is over four metres wide at the farthest distance.

Teledyne DALSA’s Bromont semiconductor wafer foundry has supported NASA’s missions to Mars since 1997.