Daring JAXA Mission Will Take 4K and 8K Images of Mars and its Moons


The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) and Japan Broadcasting Corporation (NHK) teamed up and developed the Super Hi-Vision Camera, capable of recording 4K and 8K pictures space. The project was realized for JAXA’s Martian Moons eXploration (MMX) mission. 

JAXA’s mission will be the first time that 8K ultra-high-definition photos of the Red Planet and its moons are shot in proximity. Also, by mixing the spacecraft’s actual flight data and the pictures captured by the camera, the exploration of the MMX around Mars and its moons (300 million kilometers from the Earth) will be recorded. Here is what you need to know.

A Mars Mission Like No Other

JAXA has now under development the MMX spacecraft to be launched in JFY 2024, intending to find the origin of the Martian moons and the Martian system’s evolutionary process. 

MMX is a sample-return mission that has to conduct scientific examinations of the Martian moons, Deimos and Phobos, and the Red Planet. It will also collect some martian “sand” to return to Earth. 

As for the NHK, it will develop the Super Hi-Vision Camera to see and check MMX’s challenges in ultra-high-definition pictures and share them broadly, with the help of JAXA. The taken photos at regular intervals are only partially transmitted to Earth to produce a smooth image. But the original photo data is going to be stored in a recording device in the spacecraft’s return capsule and brought back to our planet. 

JAXA and NHK So Far

Over the years, JAXA and NHK successfully brought the best space development images since 1992 (live broadcasting from the space shuttle). They also offered high-definition filming from the Kaguya lunar orbiter, visualization of the asteroid probe Hayabusa2 landing operation, and 4K recording from the ISS. 

However, this time, JAXA and NHK plan to take the world’s first 8K pictures of Mars and its moons using the expertise gathered through previous cooperation. 

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