PASADENA, USA: “Avatar” director James Cameron is helping to build a high-resolution 3-D camera on the next-generation Mars rover.
The camera will be mounted atop Curiosity, the next rover mission to Mars set for launch next year, the Pasadena Star-News reported.
Pasadena’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory scaled back its plans in 2007 to mount a 3-D camera atop Curiosity because the upcoming flagship mission to Mars was consistently over budget and behind schedule.
But Cameron lobbied NASA administrator Charles Bolden for inclusion of the 3-D camera during a January meeting, saying a rover with a better set of eyes will help the public connect with the mission.
Bolden was convinced.
San Diego-based Malin Space Science Systems is now building the 3-D mast camera with Cameron listed as co-investigator.