Long Range View of Melas Chasma
This image is a mosaic of day and night infrared images of Melas
Chasma taken by the camera system on NASA's Mars Odyssey spacecraft.
The daytime temperature images are shown in black and white,
superimposed on the martian topography. A single nighttime temperature
image is superimposed in color. The daytime temperatures range from
approximately -35 degrees Celsius (-31 degrees Fahrenheit) in black
to -5 degrees Celsius (23 degrees Fahrenheit) in white. Landslides
flowed over 100 kilometers (62 miles) across the floor of Melas Chasma.
They produced deposits with ridges and grooves of alternating warm and
cold materials that can still be seen. The temperature differences in this
image are due primarily to lighting effects, where sunlit slopes are warm
(bright) and shadowed slopes are cool (dark). The nighttime temperature
differences are due to differences in the abundance of rocky materials
that retain their heat at night and stay relatively warm (red). Fine
grained dust and sand (blue) cools off more rapidly at night. These
images were acquired using the thermal infrared imaging system infrared
Band 9, centered at 12.6 micrometers.
Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of
Technology in Pasadena, manages the 2001 Mars Odyssey mission for
NASA's Office of Space Science in Washington, D.C. Investigators at
Arizona State University in Tempe, the University of Arizona in Tucson and
NASA's Johnson Space Center, Houston, operate the science instruments.
Additional science partners are located at the Russian Aviation and Space
Agency and at Los Alamos National Laboratories, New Mexico. Lockheed
Martin Astronautics, Denver, is the prime contractor for the project, and
developed and built the orbiter. Mission operations are conducted jointly
from Lockheed Martin and from JPL.
Image credit NASA/JPL/Arizona State University.