Released 20 August 2003
The steep canyon walls and ridge forming layers of Valles Marineris are on display in this THEMIS picture. Landslides and gullies observed throughout the image are evidence to the continued mass wasting of the martian surface. Upon close examination of the canyon floor, small ripples that are likely migrating sand dunes are seen on the surface. Some slopes also display an interesting raked-like appearance that may be due to a combination of aeolian and gully forming processes.
Image information: VIS instrument. Latitude -7.4, Longitude 274.2 East (85.8 West). 19 meter/pixel resolution.
Note: this THEMIS visual image has not been radiometrically nor geometrically calibrated for this preliminary release. An empirical correction has been performed to remove instrumental effects. A linear shift has been applied in the cross-track and down-track direction to approximate spacecraft and planetary motion. Fully calibrated and geometrically projected images will be released through the Planetary Data System in accordance with Project policies at a later time.
NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory manages the 2001 Mars Odyssey mission for NASA's Office of Space Science, Washington, D.C. The Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) was developed by Arizona State University, Tempe, in collaboration with Raytheon Santa Barbara Remote Sensing. The THEMIS investigation is led by Dr. Philip Christensen at Arizona State University. Lockheed Martin Astronautics, Denver, is the prime contractor for the Odyssey project, and developed and built the orbiter. Mission operations are conducted jointly from Lockheed Martin and from JPL, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena.