Frosty Dunes
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Frosty Dunes

May 15, 2013
Springtime for the martian northern hemisphere brings defrosting spots and patterns to the north polar dune fields. This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows an example located near 76.7°N, 250.4°W. In summer, these dunes would be darker than their surroundings. However, while they are still covered by frost, they are not any darker than the substrate across which the sand is slowly traveling. Dune movement in this case is dominated by winds that blow from the southwest (lower left) toward the northeast (upper right). The picure covers an area about 3 km (1.9 mi) across and is illuminated by sunlight from the lower left. MGS MOC Release No. MOC2-743, 31 May 2004

Credits: NASA/JPL/Malin Space Science Systems

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