Contortions on the Floor of Hellas Basin
NASA/JPL/University of Arizona
Contortions on the Floor of Hellas Basin
ESP_016022_1420  Science Theme: Glacial/Periglacial Processes
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The floor of Hellas Basin is often obscured by atmospheric haze and dust, but it tends to be quite clear this time of year (northern spring and southern fall).

HiRISE images are revealing some very strange landforms on the floor of Hellas. Materials appear to have flowed in a viscous manner, like ice. Viscous flow features are common over the middle latitudes of Mars, but those in Hellas are often distinctive for unknown reasons.

The subimage shows an interesting area in color (reddish areas are dustier).

Written by: Alfred McEwen  (13 January 2010)

This is a stereo pair with PSP_007715_1420.
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Acquisition date
26 December 2009

Local Mars time:

Latitude (centered)

Longitude (East)

Range to target site
286.9 km (179.3 miles)

Original image scale range
57.4 cm/pixel (with 2 x 2 binning) so objects ~172 cm across are resolved

Map projected scale
50 cm/pixel and North is up

Map projection

Emission angle:

Phase angle:

Solar incidence angle
62°, with the Sun about 28° above the horizon

Solar longitude
29.3°, Northern Spring

For non-map projected images
North azimuth:  96°
Sub-solar azimuth:  52.1°
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RGB: red-green-blue
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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

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. The HiRISE camera was built by Ball Aerospace and Technology Corporation and is operated by the University of Arizona.