Using the new High Dynamic Range Stereo X camera, or HiDyRS-X, NASA has captured footage like you've never seen before.
NASA develops all types of interesting technologies for the purposes of exploring outer space, but sometimes they make an improvement that completely changes an existing technology. According to a report from the Verge, NASA has just released new footage of Orbital ATK’s QM-2 solid rocket booster during a testing phase captured by the new High Dynamic Range Stereo X (HiDyRS-X) camera. The clip, which runs for three minutes and can be viewed below, offers a close-up look at the rocket’s boosters in unimaginably clear detail.
The footage was released in anticipation of NASA’s forthcoming Space Launch System rocket, which will use two of the 17-story tall rocket boosters to escape the Earth’s atmosphere. SLS can burn 5.5 tons of fuel per second, generating a whopping 3.6 million pounds of thrust.
You may have seen footage of a rocket launch before. If you search for one of the thousands that have been recorded over the years, you will probably notice that the exhaust from the booster is a solid glowing mass revealing little in the way of colors or textures – it just looks like a blob of light. The footage captured by the HiDyRS-X camera brings the view to the next level; the exhaust from the booster can be seen burning in real time.
The HiDyRS-X camera is unique because unlike other high-speed cameras, it captures video in multiple exposures at a time. This allows it to create a scene where the intense light from the booster doesn’t out-shine the rest of the frame; viewers can see both the rocket and the background during the test launch.
“This is footage of Orbital ATK’s QM-2 solid rocket booster test taken by NASA’s High Dynamic Range Stereo X (HiDyRS-X) camera,” a statement from NASA said. “HiDyRS-X records high speed, high dynamic range footage in multiple exposures simultaneously for use in analyzing rocket engine tests. Traditional high speed video cameras are limited to shooting in one exposure at a time, but HiDyRS-X can record multiple high speed video exposures at once, combining them into a high dynamic range video that adequately exposes all areas of the video image for comprehensive analysis.”