Status Report

NASA Mars Picture of the Day: Small, Bouldery Crater

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

MGS MOC Release No. MOC2-712, 30 April 2004

NASA/JPL/Malin Space Science Systems

This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC)
image shows a relatively young impact crater located in
southeastern Arabia Terra
near 4.8°N, 313.9°W.
It is about 1 kilometer (about six tenths of a mile) in diameter,
roughly the size of the famous Meteor Crater in
northern Arizona, U.S.A. Indeed, the Arizona crater may once
have looked very similar to this, but erosion on Earth has
been more vigorous than on the modern Mars. Large boulders,
many of them bigger than a typical house, can be seen
in the ejecta blanket and on the crater floor. Fine, bright
dust, common throughout Arabia Terra,
has thinly mantled all but the steepest slopes.
The image is is illuminated by sunlight from the left/upper left.
The picture covers an area about 3 km (1.9 mi) across.

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.