Status Report

NASA Mars Picture of the Day: Arabia Crater Cluster

By SpaceRef Editor
May 27, 2004
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Mars Global Surveyor Mars Orbiter Camera

MGS MOC Release No. MOC2-739, 27 May 2004

NASA/JPL/Malin Space Science Systems

This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC)
image shows a portion of a large field of small craters
clustered together in northeastern Arabia Terra. Crater
clusters usually result from the secondary impact
of debris thrown from a much larger impact
or from the break-up and impact of fragments of a large meteor.
Each crater has subsequently been partially filled by
material that erodes to form a rugged crater floor
surface, and the general appearance of each crater has
been somewhat eroded and modified, as well.
The image is located
near 34.7°N, 314.7°W, and covers
an area about 3 km (1.9 mi) across.
Sunlight illuminates the scene from the lower left.

Malin Space Science Systems and the California Institute of Technology
built the MOC using spare hardware from the Mars Observer mission.
MSSS operates the camera from its facilities in San Diego, California.
The Jet Propulsion Laboratory’s Mars Surveyor Operations Project
operates the Mars Global Surveyor spacecraft with its industrial
partner, Lockheed Martin Astronautics, from facilities in Pasadena,
California and Denver, Colorado.

SpaceRef staff editor.