December 8, 2003
This map shows the percent of water by weight in near-surface materials of Mars' north polar region. It is derived from the gamma ray spectrometer component of the gamma ray spectrometer suite of instruments on NASA's Mars Odyssey spacecraft.
Significant concentrations of water (greater than 20 percent) are poleward of 55 degrees north latitude. The highest concentration, greater than 50 percent, is between 75 degrees north and the pole. Another area with a high concentration of water by weight is in the north polar plains between longitudes minus 105 degrees and minus 140 degrees, and between latitudes 60 degrees and 75 degrees.
NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the 2001 Mars Odyssey mission for the NASA Office of Space Science in Washington. Investigators at Arizona State University in Tempe, the University of Arizona in Tucson and NASA's Johnson Space Center, Houston, operate the science instruments. The gamma-ray spectrometer was provided by the University of Arizona in collaboration with the Russian Aviation and Space Agency, which provided the high-energy neutron detector, and the Los Alamos National Laboratories, New Mexico, which provided the neutron spectrometer. Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Denver, is the prime contractor for the project, and developed and built the orbiter. Mission operations are conducted jointly from Lockheed Martin and from JPL.