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SURF: Announcements of Opportunity

Below are Announcements of Opportunity posted by Caltech faculty and JPL technical staff for the SURF program. Additional AOs for the Amgen Scholars program can be found here.

Specific GROWTH projects being offerred for summer 2017 can be found here.

Students pursuing opportunities at JPL must be U.S. citizens or U.S. permanent residents.

Each AO indicates whether or not it is open to non-Caltech students. If an AO is NOT open to non-Caltech students, please DO NOT contact the mentor.

Announcements of Opportunity are posted as they are received. Please check back regularly for new AO submissions! Remember: This is just one way that you can go about identifying a suitable project and/or mentor.

Announcements for external summer programs are listed here.

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Project:  Making the Ultimate Movie of Jupiter's Clouds in Motion
Disciplines:  Computer Science, Applied and Computational Mathematics
Mentor:  Andrew Ingersoll, Professor of Planetary Science, (GPS),, Phone: 626 395 6167
Mentor URL:  (opens in new window)
Background:  As the Voyager and Cassini spacecraft approached Jupiter over separate 60-day time intervals, they took images every 2 hours. Since the planet's rotation is 10 hours, the images were made into movies with a 10-hour time step. However, the motion is jerky, and the resolution is bad at the start and is only good at the end. The goal is to do better - to make the ultimate movie.
Description:  To make a better movie, two things have to be done. The first is to interpolate in time, and the second is to fix the spatial resolution. One cannot simply fade from one time step to the next, because the cloud features move at different rates. Instead, one has to track each features and interpolate along its own trajectory. Fixing the resolution means developing a statistical or mechanical algorithm that creates each scene when viewed at high resolution at the end of the movie, and then adding that scene back into the longer, low resolution, time-interpolated part of the movie. The goal is a smoothly-flowing movie that one can zoom into to see the small-scale structures as they evolve on their own characteristic time and space scales.
References: and PIA02854

For an attempt to make time-interpolated movies, see and PIA02831
Student Requirements:  Skill with computer programming is essential. An interest and/or experience in computer animation and/or flow simulation is desirable. These are some of the skills one might need for a career in game design or animated movie-making. Knowledge of planetary science is unnecessary.
Programs:  This AO can be done under the following programs:

  Program    Available To
       SURF    Caltech students only 

Click on a program name for program info and application requirements.

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