Abstract The existing terrain models that describe the local lunar surface have limited resolution and accuracy, which can hardly meet the needs of rover navigation, positioning and geological analysis. China launched the lunar probe Chang’e-3 in December, 2013. Chang’e-3 encompassed a lander and a lunar rover called “Yutu” (Jade Rabbit). A set of panoramic cameras were installed on the rover mast. After acquiring panoramic images of four sites that were explored, the terrain models of the local lunar surface with resolution of 0.02 m were reconstructed. Compared with other data sources, the models derived from Chang’e-3 data were clear and accurate enough that they could be used to plan the route of Yutu.
Keywords space vehicles: rover — space vehicles: instruments: panoramic camera — methods: terrain reconstruction — techniques: image processing: orthoimage
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