There is a limit to the resolution of an image that can be perceived. Researchers have now demonstrated a printing technique that operates at this limit. Any lower resolution will produce a blurred image as light refracts between the pixels forming the picture.
To print an image of the highest perceivable resolution, stacks of nano-scale materials are built up in three dimensions then capped with gold or silver to produce a full gamut of colours through structural colour. The image below has been produced with this technique: in reality, this image is less than the width of a typical human hair.
If you’re up for along read, the entire paper is available here.
NASA says that a ‘brain transplant’ is necessary for the Curiosity rover before it can spool up to begin its research mission on the surface of Mars.
Subroutines used during the descent and landing of the rover and its ancillary parts are no longer needed, and the available memory on the rover is limited, so the onboard software needs to be updated to include instructions that will help it navigate its environment.
The process takes a couple of days; data transmission rates are slow and the rover isn’t in constant contact with its controllers on Earth.
(Image is a 3D render released by NASA.)
Plenty of eyes on Mars at the moment. NASA’s Curiosity rover is the largest robotic explorer yet to reach the surface of the red planet intact and has been garnering plenty of media attention.
And while much of Curiosity’s focus will be on just how different Mars is to our own planet, there’s at least one indication that we have something in common: crustal surface plates.
Here’s news of a discovery that indicates the surface of Mars has been subject to geological effects larger in scale than erosion. Photos, like the one above taken by an orbiting satellite, show signs of tectonic movement similar to large-scale terrestrial features like the Himalayas.