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|Lava-Draped Channel System on Mars|
This image shows a portion of the Athabasca Valles channel system. Part of a streamlined "island" is visible on the right, and dune-like landforms that occur on the channel floor can be seen on the left. At higher resolution it is apparent that a thin layer of solidified lava coats both the dune-like landforms and the topographically higher streamlined island. Two impact craters within the subscene can be identified by the relatively bright-rayed ejecta that surround them. Most of the region is dusty and, therefore, fairly uniform in color. However, blue tinges in the HiRISE false color data delineate scarps that are too steep for dust to accumulate. One such scarp appears where a narrow fracture cuts through the streamlined island. Another appears on the topographic step at the edge of the streamlined island.
|Layered Ice Deposits near North Pole of Mars
This false-color image of the north polar layered deposits has been processed to emphasize color variations. It shows that the color as well as texture or morphology varies from layer to layer. Some of the color variations may be caused by small amounts of water frost on the surface, or they may be due to variations in dust composition within the layered deposits. Such changes in composition may have been caused by volcanic eruptions or local weather phenomena when the layers were deposited. Overall, it is thought that the polar layered deposits contain a record of recent climate changes on Mars, similar to ice ages on Earth. High-resolution images like this will be useful in the effort to understand the climate history of Mars.
|Gullies with Characteristics of Water-Carved Channels|
False-color image of gully channels in a crater in the southern highlands of Mars, taken by the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera on the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. The gullies emanating from the rocky cliffs near the crater's rim (upper left) show meandering and braided patterns typical of water-carved channels. North is approximately up and illumination is from the left; scale, 26 centimeters per pixel.