Status Report

NASA Mars Picture of the Day: Crater in Utopia

By SpaceRef Editor
March 23, 2004
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Mars Global Surveyor Mars Orbiter Camera

MGS MOC Release No. MOC2-674, 23 March 2004

NASA/JPL/Malin Space Science Systems

Craters of the martian northern plains tend to be somewhat
shallow because material has filled them in. Their ejecta
blankets, too, are often covered by younger materials.
This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC)
image shows an example–a crater in Utopia Planitia
near 43.7°N, 227.3°W. Erosion has roughened some
of the surfaces of the material that filled the crater and
covered its ejecta deposit.
The picture 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.