PIA05694: Carbon Dioxide Landforms
 Target Name:  Mars
 Is a satellite of:  Sol (our sun)
 Mission:  Mars Global Surveyor (MGS)
 Spacecraft:  Mars Global Surveyor Orbiter
 Instrument:  Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC)
 Product Size:  836 x 1254 pixels (w x h)
 Produced By:  Malin Space Science Systems
 Producer ID:  MOC2-670
 Full-Res TIFF:  PIA05694.tif (1.05 MB)
 Full-Res JPEG:  PIA05694.jpg (173.9 kB)

Click on the image above to download a moderately sized image in JPEG format (possibly reduced in size from original)

Original Caption Released with Image:

19 March 2004
The martian south polar residual ice cap is mostly made of frozen carbon dioxide. There is no place on Earth that a person can go to see the landforms that would be produced by erosion and sublimation of hundreds or thousands of cubic kilometers of carbon dioxide. Thus, the south polar cap of Mars is as alien as alien can get. This image, acquired in February 2004 by the Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC), shows how the cap appears in summer as carbon dioxide is subliming away, creating a wild pattern of pits, mesas, and buttes. Darker surfaces may be areas where the ice contains impurities, such as dust, or where the surface has been roughened by the removal of ice. This image is located near 86.3S, 0.8W. This picture covers an area about 3 km (1.9 mi) across. Sunlight illuminates the scene from the top/upper left.

Image Credit:
NASA/JPL/Malin Space Science Systems

Image Addition Date:
2004-03-19