36th DPS Meeting, 8-12 November 2004
Session 14 Future Missions
Poster I, Tuesday, November 9, 2004, 4:00-7:00pm, Exhibition Hall 1A

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[14.16] Remote Sensing Space Science With The Multiple Instrument Distributed Aperture Sensor (MIDAS) Concept

J. Pitman, A. Duncan, D. Stubbs, R. Sigler, R. Kendrick, E. Smith, J. Mason (Lockheed Martin ATC), G. Delory, J. H. Lipps, M. Manga, J. Graham, I. dePater, S. Rieboldt (UC Berkeley CIPS), E. Bierhaus (Lockheed Martin Astronautics), J. B. Dalton (SETI NASA Ames), J. Fienup (Univ Rochester), J. Yu (NASA JPL)

The science capabilities and features of an innovative and revolutionary approach to remote sensing imaging systems aimed at increasing the return on future planetary science missions like JIMO many fold are described. Our concept, called Multiple Instrument Distributed Aperture Sensor (MIDAS), provides a large-aperture, wide-field, diffraction-limited telescope at a fraction of the cost, mass and volume of conventional space telescopes, by integrating advanced optical imaging interferometer technologies into a multi-functional remote sensing science payload. MIDAS acts as a single front-end actively controlled telescope array for use on common missions, reducing the cost and resources needed for back-end science instruments (SIs) tailored to a specific mission. MIDAS enables either sequential or concurrent SI operations in all functional modes. Passive imaging remote sensing is at diffraction-limited resolution sequentially by each SI, or at somewhat lower resolution by multiple SIs acting concurrently on the image. MIDAS inherently provides nanometer-resolution hyperspectral passive imaging without the need for any moving parts in the SIís. Our optical design features high-resolution imaging for long dwell times at high altitudes, 1m GSD from the 5000km extent of spiral orbits on JIMO, thereby enabling regional remote sensing of dynamic planet surface processes, as well as ultra-high resolution of 2cm GSD from a 100km JIMO science orbit that enables orbital searches for signs of life processes on the planet surface. In its active remote sensing modes, using an integrated solid-state laser source, MIDAS enables LIDAR, vibrometry, surface illumination, and active spectroscopy. The combination of MIDAS passive and active modes, as sequential or concurrent SI operations, increases potential return on space science missions many fold. For example, on a mission to the icy moons of Jupiter, MIDAS enhances detailed imaging of the geology and glaciology of the surface, determining the geochemistry of surface materials, and conducting seismic and tidal studies.

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