[an error occurred while processing this directive]


 


Surviving in Space



<< Back to Feature Page



View exclusive photographs and get the facts behind the frame.


Click to ZOOM IN >>


Click to ZOOM IN >>


Click to ZOOM IN >>


Click to ZOOM IN >>


Click to ZOOM IN >>


Click to ZOOM IN >>





Virtual Medicine
Photograph by Cary Wolinsky


This virtual rat imaged on a screen began with a CT scan of the real animal. The scan was fed into a computer, which generated imagery of the animal complete with organs and blood vessels. The image, created at NASA’s Ames Research Center in Mountain View, California, is three-dimensional when viewed through the proper glasses and can be rotated, enlarged, reduced, and even dissected so a viewer can get a cross-sectional view of the heart or a kidney. Astronauts preparing to study rats on the space station will practice on the virtual rat, taking virtual blood and doing virtual biopsies. En route to Mars someday, astronauts could have their virtual bodies stored in a computer. In the event of an emergency such as appendicitis, the victim’s imagery would be projected while a computer coaches an astronaut through a virtual appendectomy. Then everyone would hold their breath for the real thing.



Camera: Nikon N90
Film Type: Fujichrome Provia 100
Lens: Nikon 17-35mm zoom
Speed and F-Stop: 4 sec @ f/11
Weather Conditions: N/A
Time of Day: N/A
Lighting Techniques: Short duration flash followed by time exposure



SPECIAL EQUIPMENT OR COMMENTS:
This was a difficult scene to light. The image was generated by a computer and shown on a rear-screen projection device using a mirror. I placed a Comet strobe head low and left of the projection table and focused it on the face of the subject allowing none of the light to spill onto the surface of the table. Then I took a light reading off the table. Four seconds was required to get an image on film. That meant putting a tripod high above the table and using a ladder to operate the camera. I darkened the room. When the camera fired, the strobe went off first. The shutter stayed open for the full four seconds afterwards to allow the image to burn in.


© 2001 National Geographic Society. All rights reserved. Privacy Policy       Advertising Opportunities       Masthead

NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE HOME Contact Us Forums Subscribe
[an error occurred while processing this directive]