Status Report

NASA Mars Picture of the Day: Peridier Dune Field

By SpaceRef Editor
August 16, 2003
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Mars Global Surveyor Mars Orbiter Camera

MGS MOC Release No. MOC2-454, 16 August 2003

NASA/JPL/Malin Space Science Systems

Four days ago, the Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC)
Picture of the Day featured a MOC wide angle view of
Peridier Crater and the dark
feature on its southwestern floor. Today’s Picture of the Day
shows a MOC narrow angle view of a portion of the dark area
in southwest Peridier Crater. Some of the dark material in
this crater resolves at higher resolution into a field of small
sand dunes. The dune slip faces—the steepest slopes on the dunes—face
toward the southwest (lower left), indicating that the dominant
winds that have shaped these dunes blow from the northeast.
The picture has a resolution of about 1.8 m (5.9 ft)
per pixel; it covers an area only 1.1 km (0.7 mi) wide. The image
is somewhat grainy because it was taken through
a late northern summer hazy atmosphere in April 2003. The image
is located in southwest Peridier Crater near 25.3°N, 276.5°W.
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.