The Planet Four Challenge is off to a great start towards crossing the 5 million classification mark! As a way to extend our thanks to each and everyone who has contributed to the project, we’re holding a question and answer session tomorrow. The Planet Four Team will be answering any and all of your posted questions about Mars and Planet Four on Zooniverse Talk. Ask away in this thread, and the team will be standing by to answer throughout the day tomorrow.
Today marks the start of World Space Week which runs from October 4-10. World Space Week is a yearly event to celebrate and promote the exploration of our solar system and beyond. The week is coordinated by the United Nations with the support of the World Space Week Association (WSWA). The start date (October 4, 1957) honors the anniversary of the launch of the world’s first artificial satellite, Sputnik 1. The end date (October 10, 1967) is to commemorate the Treaty on Principles Governing the Activities of States in the Exploration and Peaceful Uses of Outer Space, including the Moon and Other Celestial Bodies.
This year’s theme is ‘Exploring Mars, Discovering Earth.” Here at Planet Four, with your help, we are exploring an alien process. The carbon dioxide geysers that appear at the Martian South Pole in Southern Spring and Summer have no Earthly counterpart. The prevailing winds blow the material uplifted by these geysers into dark fans and blotches seen from orbit on the ice sheet. For the past 4 Martian years, Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter and the HiRISE camera have been imaging the South Pole to explore the seasonal change. With your help marking the blotches and fans in the HiRISE images, we can tally the numbers of fans and blotches, measure their directions and sizes, and compare how these properties change over time in a single year as well as from year to year. With these measurements, we can better understand the processes that form the geysers and impact the Martian climate itself. By studying Mars’ climate we can better understand the similarities and differences between the sister planets.
To celebrate World Space Week, the Planet Four team is hosting a live chat on Wednesday October 9th 6pm EDT/3pm PDT/11pm BST. We’ll be joined by Planet Four Science Team Members: K.-Michael Aye, Ganna (Anya) Portyankina, and Meg Schwamb . We’ll also be joined by special guests Kristin Block and Christian Schaller. Christian is a HiRISE Ground Data System Software Developer, and Kristin is a targeting specialist for the HiRISE camera. We’ll be discussing more about the Planet Four project, how HiRISE works, and the process from commanding HiRISE to the reduced images that you see on Planet Four.
We hope you’ll join us. We’ll be posting the video live here on the blog. If you have questions for the science team or for our special guests Kristin and Christian, you can post them in the comments or tweet us at @planet_four. In the meantime, why not celebrate World Space Week by exploring Mars at planetfour.org
Some technical difficulties but we are live
Today we’ll be hosting a live chat with Planet Four science team starting at 7pm BST/6pm GMT/2pm EDT/11am PDT to mark the project’s 6 month anniversary. We’ll be joined by Planet Four PI Candy Hansen (PSI) and science team members K.-Michael Aye (UCLA), Ganna (Anya) Portyankina (University of Bern) and Meg Schwamb (Yale).
We’ll embed the video link here shortly before we start (if you don’t see it try refreshing your browser) and we’ll also tweet the link. You can send us your questions for the Planet Four team during the broadcast by tweeting us @Planet_Four. If you can’t make it to the watch the chat live, the recorded video will also be available here afterwards.
And don’t forget if you have questions after the live chat you can always post them to our Ask a Team Scientist thread on Talk.
June marks Planet Four’s 6th month anniversary, and to celebrate we’re having a live chat with the Planet Four science team on June 7th (next week!) at 7pm BST/6pm GMT/2pm EDT/11am PDT .Join us here on the blog to watch the live video feed.
We’ll be joined by Planet Four PI Candy Hansen (PSI) and science team members K.-Michael Aye (UCLA), Ganna (Anya) Portyankina (University of Bern) and Meg Schwamb (Yale). We’ll be talking about the latest Planet Four news and science as well as answering some of your questions. Send us your questions for the Planet Four team, either by leaving a comment here on the blog or by tweeting us @Planet_Four
Update: You can watch the live stream and the recorded video of the chat here.