Chryse Planitia Surfaces
NASA/JPL/University of Arizona
Chryse Planitia Surfaces
PSP_006268_1995  Science Theme: Volcanic Processes


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This image shows part of the surface of Chryse Planitia, near the mouth of several of the giant outflow channels carved by massive floods. At this location the channel is much too large to be seen within a HiRISE image, and this shows an area of level plains near the mouth.

Two geologic units are visible at this site: a relatively dark expanse in the southern part of the image, and a light, slightly higher-standing area along the northern edge. The light unit may be material that has flowed out from below the surface in a process called mud volcanism. However, many aspects of the history of the northern plains of Mars remain uncertain.

A few other prominent features are present. A long trough with aeolian (wind-blown) ripples runs through the eastern part of the image. This feature likely formed by contraction of the surface layer. This must have occurred after the formation of the light material since it cuts through the light unit in the northwest part of the image. There is also a large mound which appears to bury part of the trough, and thus is even younger. Alternatively, two troughs could both terminate at the hill.

Despite the resolution of HiRISE, the nature of this mound is still unclear. It has a rugged surface, which might mean that it has been eroded enough to remove indications of its origin.
Written by: Colin Dundas  (19 December 2007)

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Acquisition date
27 November 2007

Local Mars time:

Latitude (centered)

Longitude (East)

Range to target site
283.8 km (177.3 miles)

Original image scale range
28.4 cm/pixel (with 1 x 1 binning) so objects ~85 cm across are resolved

Map projected scale
25 cm/pixel and North is up

Map projection

Emission angle:

Phase angle:

Solar incidence angle
40°, with the Sun about 50° above the horizon

Solar longitude
354.0°, Northern Winter

North azimuth:

Sub-solar azimuth:
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non-map           (316MB)

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non-map           (268MB)

Merged IRB
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Merged RGB
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RGB color
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Color label
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IRB: infrared-red-blue
RGB: red-green-blue
About color products (PDF)

Black & white is 5 km across; enhanced color about 1 km
For scale, use JPEG/JP2 black & white map-projected images

All of the images produced by HiRISE and accessible on this site are within the public domain: there are no restrictions on their usage by anyone in the public, including news or science organizations. We do ask for a credit line where possible:
NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

For information about NASA and agency programs on the Web, visit: 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.