Dramatic Lighting of Icy Flows
Dramatic Lighting of Icy Flows
ESP_025646_1440  Science Theme: Mass Wasting Processes
This image shows flow features (tongue-shaped features in the depressions running down the slope) on the inner slope of an impact crater east of Hellas impact basin.

The time of year combined with MRO’s orbit and the slope combine to provide the geometry for an image with almost glancing (very low sun) illumination. Such low-sun lighting enhances subtle topographic features and makes a dramatic image.

Other flows in this region of Mars, long thought to be due to flowing ice, have been confirmed to be icy by the Shallow Radar (SHARAD) experiment on MRO.

Written by: Alfred McEwen  (7 March 2012)
Acquisition date
15 January 2012

Local Mars time

Latitude (centered)

Longitude (East)

Spacecraft altitude
252.2 km (156.7 miles)

Original image scale range
50.7 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
72°, with the Sun about 18° above the horizon

Solar longitude
57.5°, Northern Spring

For non-map projected images
North azimuth:  98°
Sub-solar azimuth:  51.1°
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   (135MB)

IRB color
map-projected   (79MB)

Black and white
map-projected  (63MB)
non-map           (78MB)

IRB color
map projected  (24MB)
non-map           (67MB)

Merged IRB
map projected  (117MB)

Merged RGB
map-projected  (114MB)

RGB color
non map           (67MB)
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.