Arkhangelsky Crater Dunes
NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Arkhangelsky Crater Dunes
ESP_019559_1390  Science Theme: Aeolian Processes
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This observation shows dunes on the floor of the large, degraded Arkhangelsky Crater in the Southern hemisphere of Mars.

Most of the dunes visible in this observation are barchan dunes. On barchan dunes, the steep slip face is between two "horns" that point downwind. In this case the dunes tell us that the wind direction is approximately from South-Southeast to North-Northwest.

Dust devils that pass through this area strip dust off of the ground, leaving tracks. In this observation, the dust devil tracks are clearly visible on the dunes, but are much less obvious on the rocky crater floor. When the thin coating of bright dust that covers the dunes is removed from the relatively dark dunes by dust devils, there is a clear contrast between the newly clean dune surface and the rest of the dune.

Although it is difficult to see the dust devil tracks on the crater floor, if you look closely, you can actually follow tracks from a dune to the crater floor and even back onto another dune such as in this subimage which is approximately .75 kilometers (.46 miles) wide.

Written by: Anjani Polit   (19 January 2011)



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Acquisition date:28 September 2010 Local Mars time: 3:44 PM
Latitude (centered):-40.856° Longitude (East):335.033°
Range to target site:254.6 km (159.1 miles)Original image scale range:50.9 cm/pixel (with 2 x 2 binning) so objects ~153 cm across are resolved
Map projected scale:50 cm/pixel and North is upMap projection:Equirectangular
Emission angle:0.3° Phase angle:72.7°
Solar incidence angle:73°, with the Sun about 17° above the horizon Solar longitude:155.5°, Northern Summer
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North azimuth:97° Sub-solar azimuth:37.1°
For map-projected products
North azimuth:270°Sub solar azimuth:210.8°

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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.