Winter in Hellas Basin
October 9, 2009
This image was collected during southern winter when the usually cloudy Hellas Basin is relatively free from clouds. Even though there is little cloud cover, the atmosphere is still much thicker due to the deeper basin compared to elsewhere on Mars, making image details not as crisp as when viewed through thinner atmosphere. In the center of the image are several dark streaks which originate from the side of a higher standing butte. The dark material is likely being eroded from a single layer within the cliff face. Wind has moved some of the eroded dark material to form the streaks.
Topics: Environment, Mars, Astronomy, Planetary science, Arabia Terra, Hellas Planitia, Planetary geology, Cloud