CIVA Depth Cues

Added some depth cues to the CIVA panorama. It really helps to create a sense of depth and scale.

I segmented the image boulder for boulder looking for overlapping sillhouettes. That created the initial sorting.

Then I used the shadows and the scale of the surface grain to estimate distance.

I coloured the surface redish to match with some information on colour that I have seen drifting around on the web..

I added the contrast loss that an atmosphere/fog would give based on the distance estimates.

CIVA Sun direction

I spent some time reconstructing the vector to the sun in the Philae CIVA panorama images.

I mostly used the CIVA camera 4 image. It has a lot of objects casting shadows. onto other surfaces

If one can see an object and its corresponding shadow in an image one can construct a plane using the cameras position and the two vectors pointing from the camera to the shadow and its caster. The sun is located somewhere on that plane.

If one has more than one object with an corresponding shadow one can create multiple planes. And the line that is created in the intersection of those planes will point at the sun.

This approah worked very well for that image.

My normalized vector pointing at the sun in the Philae spacecraft coordinate system is [0.0449037,0.68573,0.726469]

Those numbers obviously do not say much so I created this QuicktimeVR:


This image is looking down at philae from the sun. The sun is in the intersection of the three coloured lines that are the intersecting planes seen edge on.

Looking from the sun

This image shows which shadows I used. (I found the shadows in the vastly better resolved mosaic released by ESA. I then transferred them to this square image.) The green cross gizmos are the shadow/caster pairs and the red green and blue lines are actually the planes constructed seen edge on.

shadow Planes

Navcam November 17

Navcam images registered on my shapemodel. I am very happy with how well the model matches. There are very few alignment errors.



3DTV (side by side)

Image credits: ESA/Rosetta/NAVCAM

Image processing/shapemodel: Mattias Malmer




The Mountains of Agilkia

I just made this digital flyby of the mountains of Agilkia. OSIRIS frame draped ofer my latest digital terrainmodel of the landing area.

Sleep well little Philae. What a grand view you have!

Image credits:


The slopes and roughness of the Philae landingsite

I wanted to get a feel for the landscape in which Philae is set to land. I had already built a resonably accurate terrainmodel of the area. So I decided to play a little with the data.

The result are these two maps.

First a map showing the slope of the terrain. There are a few really steep places in the landing area but most of it is thankfully rather flat.

Then a slightly more worrying map showing the surface roughness. There are a few boulder fields that scare. but much of the area seem to be smooth (at least on the scales resolved in my dataset.)

Obviously my methods are not as refined as the ones employed by the mission teams but these maps should give an idea of the challenges facing the little lander.


I also made this Anaglyph:


Testing the Planetarium version

I’m preparing a version of my shapemodel for rendering in realtime.

Dipl. Ing. (FH) Rainer Christiansen, curator of the Mencke Planetarium in Gluecksburg, contacted me and suggested the possibility. Working under his supervision we converted the model to the E&S digistar format. This video was recorded by Rainer as part of the testing of the models performance in their Evans & Sutherland Digistar planetarium system.

Mencke Planetarium: