Status Report

NASA Mars Picture of the Day: Spotty Dunes

By SpaceRef Editor
July 27, 2004
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Mars Global Surveyor Mars Orbiter Camera

MGS MOC Release No. MOC2-800, 27 July 2004

NASA/JPL/Malin Space Science Systems

Frost-covered dunes develop spots and streaks as they begin
to defrost in springtime.
This April 2004 Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC)
image shows a suite of north polar dunes in the early
stages of the defrosting process. At the time the
image was acquired, Mars was only 1 month into the
northern spring season.
The picture is located
near 75.9°N, 266.0°W, and is
illuminated by sunlight from the lower left. The
image covers an area about 3 km (1.9 mi) wide.

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.