NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter has been observing Mars in sharp detail for more than a decade, enabling it to document many types of changes, such as the way winds alter the appearance of this recent impact site.

The space-rock impact that created this blast zone occurred sometime between September 2005 and February 2006, as bracketed by observations made with the Mars Orbiter Camera on NASA's Mars Global Surveyor spacecraft. The location is between two large volcanos, named Ascraeus Mons and Pavonis Mons, in a dusty area of the Tharsis region of Mars. During the period from 2007 to 2012, winds blowing through the pass between the volcanoes darkened some regions and brightened others, probably by removing and depositing dust.

The view covers an area about 1.0 mile (1.6 kilometers) across, at 7 degrees north latitude, 248 degrees east longitude. North is toward the top.

An animation is availalble at http://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA21267


  • Title: Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter Observes Changes
  • Creator: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Univ. of Arizona
  • Date Created: 2017-02-08
  • Rights: JPL
  • Album: kboggs

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