Released 30 September 2003
Deep in the southern highlands, the work of innumerable dust devils produces a cobweb-like pattern of tracks across the Martian surface. The spinning atmospheric vortices commonly called dust devils are like mini tornadoes that vacuum up the dust from the surface to expose darker material in their wake. Dust devil tracks are among the most recent features on Mars and are continually forming.
Image information: VIS instrument. Latitude -55.6, Longitude 203.9 East (156.1 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.