Light-Toned Layered Deposits on Southern Mid-Latitude Crater Floor
NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Light-Toned Layered Deposits on Southern Mid-Latitude Crater Floor
ESP_011310_1395  Science Theme: Sedimentary/Layering Processes
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This image features the floor of a crater in the Southern highlands of Mars.

The light-toned layered deposits (LTLD) are located in the center of the image; they are exposed along the edges of the high-standing mesa. LTLD are found in many places on Mars, including impact craters and canyons near the equator. They may have been deposited by sedimentary processes involving wind and/or water.

Dunes or ripples surround the mesa. The orientation of the dunes indicates that the direction of the dominant wind at the time of the dune/ripple formation was along the troughs that surround the mesa.

The terrain near the bottom of the image has a texture that geologists call "etched." The etched texture is a result of differential erosion as some materials being eroded more easily than others. One possible scenario is that the region was buried by a soft sedimentary deposit that is now being removed by wind erosion.

Written by: Kelly Kolb   (15 April 2009)

This is a stereo pair with ESP_011811_1395.



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Acquisition date:24 December 2008 Local Mars time: 3:57 PM
Latitude (centered):-40.129° Longitude (East):182.060°
Range to target site:253.4 km (158.3 miles)Original image scale range:25.3 cm/pixel (with 1 x 1 binning) so objects ~76 cm across are resolved
Map projected scale:25 cm/pixel and North is upMap projection:Equirectangular
Emission angle:2.3° Phase angle:69.3°
Solar incidence angle:67°, with the Sun about 23° above the horizon Solar longitude:179.5°, Northern Summer
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North azimuth:96° Sub-solar azimuth:25.9°
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North azimuth:270°Sub solar azimuth:201.0°

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For information about NASA and agency programs on the Web, visit: http://www.nasa.gov. NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, Calif., manages the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington. Lockheed Martin Space Systems is the prime contractor for the project and built the spacecraft. The HiRISE camera was built by Ball Aerospace and Technology Corporation and is operated by the University of Arizona. The image data were processed using the U.S. Geological Survey’s ISIS3 software.