Light and Dark Bands in Darwin Crater
Light and Dark Bands in Darwin Crater
ESP_022117_1225  Science Theme: Landscape Evolution
Darwin Crater is a 178-kilometer diameter impact crater located in the Southern Hemisphere of Mars, to the southeast of Argyre Planitia.

Originally targeted by MRO’s Context Camera, we see alternating light and dark toned bands in this region. However, the higher-resolution HiRISE camera reveals that these dark bands are actually troughs being infilled by dark-toned dunes and the light-toned bands are actually highly fractured and bouldery resistant layers that form the higher elevation regions.

Dark streaks and dust devil tracks across much of the HiRISE image indicate active sediment transport by wind processes.

Written by: Ginny Gulick  (15 June 2011)
Acquisition date
15 April 2011

Local Mars time

Latitude (centered)

Longitude (East)

Spacecraft altitude
251.9 km (156.5 miles)

Original image scale range
50.5 cm/pixel (with 2 x 2 binning) so objects ~152 cm across are resolved

Map projected scale
50 cm/pixel and North is up

Map projection

Emission angle

Phase angle

Solar incidence angle
45°, with the Sun about 45° above the horizon

Solar longitude
274.7°, Northern Winter

For non-map projected images
North azimuth:  97°
Sub-solar azimuth:  33.3°
Black and white
map projected  non-map

IRB color
map projected  non-map

Merged IRB
map projected

Merged RGB
map projected

RGB color
non-map projected

Black and white
map-projected   (162MB)

IRB color
map-projected   (79MB)

Black and white
map-projected  (63MB)
non-map           (105MB)

IRB color
map projected  (20MB)
non-map           (90MB)

Merged IRB
map projected  (158MB)

Merged RGB
map-projected  (146MB)

RGB color
non map           (85MB)
B&W label
Color label
Merged IRB label
Merged RGB label
EDR products

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’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.