Status Report

NASA Mars Picture of the Day: East Candor cPROTO

By SpaceRef Editor
November 30, 2004
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Mars Global Surveyor Mars Orbiter Camera

MGS MOC Release No. MOC2-926, 30 November 2004

NASA/JPL/Malin Space Science Systems

This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC)
image was acquired using the cPROTO technique described on
27 September 2004 in
“cPROTO Views of Spirit’s Rover Tracks and Athabasca Vallis Flood Features.”
In other words, the picture was obtained by MOC with a resolution
that is better than 1 meter per pixel (better than 3 feet per pixel).
On the left is a view of the entire cPROTO image; on the right is a
magnified view of the features seen in the white box on the left. The
200 meter scale bar is about 219 yards long. This cPROTO image,
obtained in August 2004, shows layered sedimentary rocks exposed
in eastern Candor Chasma, part of the vast Valles Marineris trough
system. On the steep slope in the lower half of the image (left),
the rocks have been breaking down into fine-grained material that
slides down the slope to create fan-shaped talus accumulations. In
some cases, the movement of this dry debris has cut narrow, straight
chutes into the slope. The sub-meter resolution of the cPROTO image
reveals that there are no boulders in the talus, attesting to the
extremely fine-grained and easily broken-up nature of these sedimentary
rocks. The image is located
near 7.3°S, 69.0°W.
Sunlight illuminates the scene from the upper 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.