Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Contortions on the Floor of Hellas Basin

The floor of Hellas Basin is often obscured by atmospheric haze and dust, but it tends to be quite clear this time of year (northern spring and southern fall).

HiRISE images are revealing some very strange landforms on the floor of Hellas. Materials appear to have flowed in a viscous manner, like ice. Viscous flow features are common over the middle latitudes of Mars, but those in Hellas are often distinctive for unknown reasons.

The subimage shows an interesting area in color (reddish areas are dustier).

This image completes a stereo pair with PSP_007715_1420, so be sure to check out the stereo anaglyph.

Photo credit: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

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