02.08.2017 Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter Observes Changes
01.26.2017 Mono Lake
01.25.2017 'Wing' Dike of Hardened Lava in New Mexico
01.25.2017 Blade-Like Martian Walls Outline Polygons
01.23.2017 Spirit And Opportunity By The Numbers
01.10.2017 Mars 2020 Rover - Artist's Concept
01.06.2017 Earth and Its Moon, as Seen From Mars
12.13.2016 Now and Long Ago at Gale Crater, Mars
12.13.2016 Where's Boron? Mars Rover Detects It
11.15.2016 Schiaparelli Impact Site on Mars, Stereo
11.03.2016 Schiaparelli Impact Site on Mars, in Color
10.17.2016 MAVEN Captures Rapid Cloud Formation
10.17.2016 Mars' Nightside Atmosphere
10.17.2016 Ultraviolet Image Near Mars' South Pole
10.17.2016 Ultraviolet Mars Reveals Cloud Formation
10.05.2016 Dust Haze Hiding the Martian Surface in 2001
10.04.2016 Test of Lander Vision System for Mars 2020
10.03.2016 A Sharpened Ultraviolet View of Mars
10.03.2016 Curiosity Self-Portrait at 'Murray Buttes'
10.03.2016 Butte 'M9a' in 'Murray Buttes' on Mars
09.19.2016 Ribbon Cutting
09.09.2016 Farewell to Murray Buttes (Image 5)
09.09.2016 Farewell to Murray Buttes (Image 4)
09.09.2016 Farewell to Murray Buttes (Image 3)
09.09.2016 Farewell to Murray Buttes (Image 2)
09.09.2016 Farewell to Murray Buttes (Image 1)
08.26.2016 Out-of-this-World Records
08.04.2016 Mars Rover Is New Social Media Game
08.04.2016 Mars Rover Social Media Game
08.02.2016 Artist Concept for RIMFAX
07.20.2016 Viking 40 Year Anniversary Artwork: Medal
07.18.2016 Mars 2020 Range Trigger
07.14.2016 NASA to Launch Mars Rover in 2020
Arabia DunesThe battered region of Arabia Terra is among the oldest terrain on Mars. A dense patchwork of craters from countless impacts testifies to the landscape's ancient age, dating back billions of years.
In eastern Arabia lies an anonymous crater, 120 kilometers (75 miles) across. The floor of this crater contains a large exposure of rocky material, a field of dark sand dunes, and numerous patches of what is probably fine-grained sand. The shape of the dunes hints that prevailing winds have come from different directions over the years.
This false-color image, made from frames taken by the Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) aboard NASA's Mars Odyssey orbiter, shows the center of the crater's floor. The image combines a daytime view at visible wavelengths with a nighttime view at infrared (heat-sensing) wavelengths, giving scientists clues to the physical nature of the surface.
Fine-grained materials, such as dust and the smallest sand particles, heat up quickly by day and cool off equally quickly at night. However, coarser materials-bigger sand particles, gravel, hardened sediments, and rocks- respond more slowly to the same daily cycle.
This means that when THEMIS views these coarse materials late in the Martian night, they appear warmer than the pools and patches of finegrain sand. In the image here, areas that are cold at night appear in blue tints, while the warmer areas show in yellows, oranges, and reds.
Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Arizona/HI-RISE