Ganymede's Trailing Hemisphere
September 26, 2003
In this global view of Ganymede's trailing side, the colors are enhancedto emphasize color differences. The enhancement reveals frosty polar capsin addition to the two predominant terrains on Ganymede, bright, grooved terrain and older, dark furrowed areas. Many craters with diametersup to several dozen kilometers are visible. The violet hues at the polesmay be the result of small particles of frost which would scatter more lightat shorter wavelengths (the violet end of the spectrum). Ganymede's magnetic field, which was detected by the magnetometer on NASA's Galileo spacecraft in 1996, may be partly responsible for the appearance of thepolar terrain. Compared to Earth's polar caps, Ganymede's polar terrain is relatively vast. The frost on Ganymede reaches latitudes as low as 40 degrees on average and 25 degrees at some locations. For comparison with Earth, Miami, Florida lies at 26 degrees north latitude, and Berlin, Germany is located at 52 degrees north.