There are seven different instruments that make up DISR:
Solar Aureole Camera
Surface Science Lamp
These instruments are divided into two main categories: instruments which measure atmospheric aerosol particle makeup and instruments which take pictures of the surface. The DISR instrument is one of the most complicated optical instruments to ever be sent on a space mission.
the instrument, or "sensor head" (front and side views)
Descent Imager- Spectral Radiometer Quick Facts
DISR’s scientific instruments will focus on understanding the following areas:
1. the nature and distribution of photochemical haze in Titan’s atmosphere
2. the heat balance of Titan’s atmosphere
3. the nature of the surface and its interaction with the atmosphere
4. the atmospheric composition of Titan
Titan is the last unexplored frontier in the solar system. Interest regarding this moon as a target for a probe arose during the Pioneer and Voyager missions, which returned pictures of Titan’s impermeable methane-rich atmosphere.
The original proposal for the
DISR instrument was submitted in 1990.
Each of the cameras in the imaging system takes a picture of Titan's surface in a different direction and at a different resolution to produce a "triplet" collection of three images which may be combined with other triplets to create a mosaic of the surface.
During the descent,
the imaging system will collect over 700 images of Titan’s
surface at various altitudes
When the probe is 700
meters above Titan’s surface terrain, the
surface science lamp will turn on, illuminating Titan’s
features near the landing
will allow DISR to collect data for twenty minutes on the surface if the
probe survives impact.
DISR was built by a collaboration
of Martin-Marietta and local Tucson companies.
Three DISR flight models were built: DISR I (in Germany), DISR II (at
LPL), and DISR III