PIA04130: Frozen Carbon Dioxide

Frozen Carbon Dioxide


1 August 2005
This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows a south polar residual cap landscape, formed in frozen carbon dioxide. There is no place on Earth that one can go to visit a landscape covering thousands of square kilometers with frozen carbon dioxide, so mesas, pits, and other landforms of the martian south polar region are as alien as they are beautiful. The scarps of the south polar region are known from thousands of other MGS MOC images to retreat at a rate of about 3 meters (~3 yards) per martian year, indiating that slowly, over the course of the MGS mission, the amount of carbon dioxide in the martian atmosphere has probably been increasing.

Location near : 86.9°S, 25.5°W
Image width : width: ~3 km (~1.9 mi)
Illumination from : upper left
Season : Southern Spring

Cataloging Keywords:

Name Value Additional Values
Target Mars Earth
System Mars Earth
Target Type Planet Earth
Mission Mars Global Surveyor (MGS)
Instrument Host Mars Global Surveyor (MGS)
Host Type Orbiter
Instrument Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC)
Extra Keywords Atmosphere, Grayscale
Acquisition Date
Release Date 2005-08-01
Date in Caption 2005-08-01
Image Credit NASA/JPL/Malin Space Science Systems
Source photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA04130
Identifier PIA04130