The Maestro Science Activity Planner is a computer program that assists human users in planning operations of the Mars Explorer Rover (MER) mission and visualizing scientific data returned from the MER rovers. Relative to its predecessors, this program is more powerful and easier to use. This program is built on the Java Eclipse open-source platform around a Web-browser- based user-interface paradigm to provide an intuitive user interface to Mars rovers and landers.

This program affords a combination of advanced display and simulation capabilities. For example, a map view of terrain can be generated from images acquired by the High Resolution Imaging Science Explorer instrument aboard the Mars Recon naissance Orbiter spacecraft and overlaid with images from a navigation camera (more precisely, a stereoscopic pair of cameras) aboard a rover, and an interactive, annotated rover traverse path can be incorporated into the overlay. It is also possible to construct an overhead perspective mosaic image of terrain from navigation-camera images.

This program can be adapted to similar use on other outer-space missions and is potentially adaptable to numerous terrestrial applications involving analysis of data, operations of robots, and planning of such operations for acquisition of scientific data.

This program was written by Jeffrey S. Norris, Thomas M. Crockett, Jason M. Fox, Joseph C. Joswig, Mark W. Powell, Khawaja S. Shams, Recaredo J. Torres, Michael N. Wallick, and David S. Mittman of Caltech for NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

This software is available for commercial licensing. Please contact Karina Edmonds of the California Institute of Technology at (626) 395-2322. Refer to NPO-45871.

NASA Tech Briefs Magazine

This article first appeared in the November, 2008 issue of NASA Tech Briefs Magazine.

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