High-Definition Television System Onboard Lunar Explorer Kaguya (SELENE) and Imaging of the Moon and the Earth
The High-Definition television (HDTV) system onboard the Japanese lunar explorer Kaguya (SELENE) consists of a telephotographic camera and a wide-angle camera that each have 2.2 M-pixel IT-CCDs (interline transfer charge-coupled devices) and LSIs (large-scale integrated circuits) of the several-million-gates class. One minute-long motion pictures acquired by the HDTV system at 30 fps (frames per second) are recorded in a 1 GB semiconductor memory after compression, and then transmitted to a ground station. In the development of the space-going HDTV system, a commercial ground-model HDTV system was extensively modified and evaluated for its suitability to withstand the harsh environment of space through environmental tests. The HDTV acquired a total of 6.3 TB of movies and still images of the Earth and the Moon over the mission period that started on September 29, 2007, and ended on June 11, 2009. Footage of an “Earth-rise” and an “Earth-set” on the lunar horizon were captured for the first time by the HDTV system. During a lunar eclipse, images of the Earth’s “diamond ring” were acquired for the first time. The CCDs and the instruments used in the system remained in good working order throughout the mission period, despite the harsh space environment, which suggests a potential new approach to the development of instruments for use in space.
KeywordsHDTV Kaguya Earth-rise Earth-set Diamond ring
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