Status Report

NASA Mars Picture of the Day: Dark Slope Streaks

By SpaceRef Editor
March 13, 2004
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Mars Global Surveyor Mars Orbiter Camera

MGS MOC Release No. MOC2-664, 13 March 2004

NASA/JPL/Malin Space Science Systems

Martian slope streaks occur in the regions most heavily
mantled by fine, dry dust, particularly Tharsis, Arabia, and
the knobby areas between Amazonis and Cerberus.
This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC)
image shows some examples of dark slope streaks off of
buttes, mesas, and massifs in a dust-mantled crater in
central Arabia Terra. New slope streaks form from time to
time in the modern martian environment; the streaks in this
image probably formed within the past decade. To create them, dust
slid or avalanched down the slopes in an almost liquid-like manner.
The image is located
near 6.8°N, 321.7°W. The picture covers an area
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.