Cross-Instrument Comparison of MapCam and OVIRS on OSIRIS-REx

D. R. Golish, A. A. Simon, D. C. Reuter, S. Ferrone, B. E. Clark, J. Y. Li, D. N. DellaGiustina, C. Drouet d’Aubigny, B. Rizk, D. S. Lauretta

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Two of the instruments onboard the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft, the MapCam color imager and the OVIRS visible and infrared spectrometer, observed the surface of asteroid (101955) Bennu in partially overlapping wavelengths. Significant scientific advances have been enabled by using data from these two instruments in tandem, but a robust statistical understanding of their relationship is needed for future analyses to cross-compare their data as accurately and sensitively as possible. Here we present a cross-instrument comparison of data acquired by MapCam and OVIRS, including methods and results for all global and site-specific observation campaigns in which both instruments were active. In our analysis, we consider both the absolute radiometric offset and the relative (normalized) variation between the two instruments; we find that both depend strongly on the photometric and instrumental conditions during the observation. The two instruments have a large absolute offset (>15%) due to their independent radiometric calibrations. However, they are very consistent (relative offset as low as 1%) when each instrument’s response is normalized at a single wavelength, particularly at low phase angles where shadows on Bennu’s rough surface are minimized. We recommend using the global datasets acquired at 12:30 pm local solar time for cross-comparisons; data acquired at higher phase angles have larger uncertainties.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number5
JournalSpace Science Reviews
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2022


  • (101955) Bennu
  • Asteroids
  • Data reduction techniques
  • Instrumentation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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