Science and Exploration

ISRO’s Mars Orbiter Mission Payload Views the Albedo of Mars

By Keith Cowing
Press Release
March 4, 2015
Filed under ,
ISRO’s Mars Orbiter Mission Payload Views the Albedo of Mars
ISRO Imagery of Mars

Methane Sensor for Mars (MSM) payload onboard MOM intends to detect the presence of Methane and measure the column density of the same.
One of the secondary objectives of this payload is to measure the reflectance of Martian surface in 1.65 micron. MSM has two channels, Methane and reference to measure the radiance from the surface of Mars.

All planets in the Solar system receive Sun’s radiation to varying degrees depending on their distance from the Sun. Observing the surface of the planet depends on how this radiation is reflected back. Reflected solar radiation from Mars is a diagnostic signal of the planet which provides lot of information about the planet’s surface as well as its atmosphere. When we measure the radiance in a specific wavelength of light (in this case, 1.65 micron), then we can generate a reflectance map.

The map presented here shows the surface reflectance of Mars as viewed at 1.65 micron from the reference channel of MSM till December 16, 2014. In the map, the blue colour indicates low albedo features and the red shows high albedo features on the Martian surface.

The map resolution is 0.5°x0.5° in Latitude-Longitude. By correcting the data for CO2 absorption, a major part of atmospheric effects is taken care of. This data along with the reflectance measured by Mars Colour Camera will be useful to study the surface properties of Mars.

(Image credit: SAC, ISRO)’

SpaceRef co-founder, Explorers Club Fellow, ex-NASA, Away Teams, Journalist, Space & Astrobiology, Lapsed climber.