WATCH: NASA HDR camera records rocket test | Inquirer Technology

WATCH: NASA HDR camera records rocket test

/ 02:20 AM August 10, 2016

Thousands watched in awe as NASA tested its Space Launch System last month. Little did most of them know that another test was running side by side and was keeping a close eye on the the rocket test.

The test was for the NASA High Dynamic Range Stereo X (HiDyRS-X) project. A brand-new, high-speed HDR camera was set up to record the video with never-before-seen detail. It would be safe to say that rocket thrust and smoke never looked so good.


Before HiDyRS-X footage. Image NASA

After HiDyRS-X footage. Image NASA

HiDyRS-X records multiple, slow-motion video exposures and then combine them into an HDR video that exposes all areas of the video.


The QM-2 test offered a rare opportunity for the HiDyRS-X team to test their hardware in a full-scale environment. The recorded footage actually lasted only a few seconds because the booster shook the ground such that the camera’s power cable was unplugged from the power box.

Thankfully the short footage was more than enough to prove that the HiDyRS-X’s technology is sound and the team walked away with a few lessons such as the understanding of just how powerful engine tests can be and how to protect monitoring equipment from damage or disconnection.

HiDyRS-X is expected to revolutionize propulsion video analysis given the amount of never-before-seen data that it can show for scientists to analyze. And as with many NASA technologies, the HiDyRS-X’s technology may one day benefit the commercial market and lead to cameras that have higher HDR capturing capabilities.  Alfred Bayle

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