Thursday, January 26, 2012

Sand Dunes in Noachis Terra

Sand dunes are among the most widespread aeolian (wind-formed) features present on Mars. Their spatial distribution and morphology are affected by changes in wind direction and wind strength. Patterns of dune erosion and deposition provide insight into the sedimentary history of the surrounding terrain.

This image shows sand dunes trapped in an impact crater in Noachis Terra. Dunes and sand ripples of various shapes and sizes, such as in this enhanced-color subimage, show the natural beauty created by physical processes.

This is a stereo pair with ESP_024976_1375.

Photo credit: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Notes: This crater is located a very short distance due west of Hellespontus Montes, which is to the west of Hellas Planitia. Also, for an mp4 video clip of these dunes, with additional photographs, click here.

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