NASA Releases Additional Evidence of Liquid Water on Mars

By Keith Cowing
November 20, 2000
Filed under ,

Last summer NASA released a series of images in conjunction with a paper published in Science magazine. Taken together that imagery provided substantive evidence that liquid water has been altering the surface of Mars in recent times – and may well be doing so up to the present day. One of the main visible indications of water’s action were a series of gullies emerging from slopes on the surface of Mars.

NASA has now released additional imagery taken within Hale Crater that also show channels and gullies which are highly suggestive of the action of liquid water at or very near to the surface of Mars.

Autumn Afternoon in Hale Crater MGS MOC Release No. MOC2-257, 17 November 2000

Wide Angle Context View

Full Resolution View 120 KBytes

High Resolution View

50%-sized View 325 KBytes
Full Resolution View 1.4 MBytes

NASA JPL Image Caption: “The seasons on Mars and Earth are anti-correlated at present: days are getting shorter and shadows are getting longer as autumn
ends and the beginning of winter draws nearer in the martian southern hemisphere, just as the same is occurring in Earth’s
northern hemisphere. Long shadows are especially prominent in this high resolution view of mountains forming part of the central
peaks of Hale Crater (left), a 136 kilometer-(85 mile)-diameter impact crater at 36°S, 37°W. The two pictures were taken
simultaneously by the Mars Global Surveyor Mars Orbiter Camera on November 10, 2000. The sun illuminates the scene from the
northwest (upper left) about 22° above the horizon. Knowing the sun angle and the length of the longest shadow (~1.6 km; ~1.0 mi),
the height of the largest peak in the high resolution view (right) is about 630 meters (~2,070 ft) above the crater floor. Sand dunes
blanket the middle portion of the high resolution view, and small gullies–possibly carved by water–can be seen on the slopes of some
of the peaks at the upper left. Winter in the southern hemisphere will begin in mid-December 2000. The high resolution view covers an area 3 km
(1.9 mi) wide at a full-resolution scale of 3 meters (9.8 ft) per pixel.”

Related Links

° NASA’s Mars Exploration Program, NASA JPL

° Mars Global Surveyor, NASA JPL

Background Information

° Whole Mars Catalog News

° 3 November 2000: Enhanced Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter (MOLA) Topographic Maps of Mars Released, SpaceRef

° 29 October 2000: A Year of Mars News: It was the worst of times; it was the best of times, SpaceRef

° 19 October 2000: NASA Outlines Mars Exploration Program for the Next Two Decades , NASA

° 19 October 2000: Bacterial Species 2-9-3 Resurrected after a Quarter of a Billion Years, SpaceRef

° 20 August 2000: Arctic and Antarctic Analogs for Liquid Water on Mars, SpaceRef

° 27 June 2000: British Researchers Try to Challenge Evidence of Mars Meteorite Fossils – But Don’t Make Their
, SpaceRef

° 25 June 2000: Mars Once Had Salty Oceans – Just Like Earth. , SpaceRef

° 22 June 2000: Mars May Be Even Wetter Than It Was Last Week, SpaceRef

° 22 June 2000: Mars, Like Earth, is not a Simple Planet to Understand, SpaceRef

° 20 February 2000: Mars Exploration: AAAS Ponders: “Where do we go from here?”, SpaceRef

SpaceRef co-founder, Explorers Club Fellow, ex-NASA, Away Teams, Journalist, Space & Astrobiology, Lapsed climber.