PIA17629: Martian Glaciers and Brain Terrain
Target Name: Mars
Is a satellite of: Sol (our sun)
Mission: Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO)
Spacecraft: Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO)
Instrument: HiRISE
Product Size: 2880 x 1800 pixels (width x height)
Produced By: University of Arizona/HiRise-LPL
Other Information: Other products from image ESP_033165_2195
Full-Res TIFF: PIA17629.tif (15.56 MB)
Full-Res JPEG: PIA17629.jpg (1.045 MB)

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Original Caption Released with Image:

Scientists now know that Mars has a lot more ice than once thought. Many lobate features are now known to be almost pure ice, like glaciers on the Earth.

We still don't know for sure if these Martian ice deposits flow like Earth's glaciers. Knowing how fast they flow (if at all!) would help us understand more about the climate of Mars and how it has changed over time.

This image shows one of these icy lobate features wrapping around a small hill. There is an unusual texture on the ice at the base of this hill that people have called “brain terrain.” This strange-looking surface might be related to flow of the ice, but we still don't have a definite explanation for this mystery.

HiRISE is one of six instruments on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. The University of Arizona, Tucson, operates the orbiter's HiRISE camera, which was built by Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp., Boulder, Colo. NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter Project for the NASA Science Mission Directorate, Washington.

Image Credit:
NASA/JPL-Caltech/Univ. of Arizona

Image Addition Date:
2013-09-18