North Polar Layers in the Springtime
North Polar Layers in the Springtime
ESP_025715_2605  Science Theme: Polar Geology
This is an especially pretty image due to the color variations and lighting geometry.

The color variations are due to mixtures of reddish dust with white frost and ice. The image was acquired as a "rider" with either a Context Camera or CRISM target.

One of these other MRO experiments chose this location to point at with the spacecraft, then the HiRISE science lead for this 2-week planning cycle decided to add a HiRISE image here for a high-resolution sample.

Written by: Alfred McEwen  (15 February 2012)
Acquisition date
21 January 2012

Local Mars time

Latitude (centered)

Longitude (East)

Spacecraft altitude
317.2 km (197.1 miles)

Original image scale range
31.9 cm/pixel (with 1 x 1 binning) so objects ~96 cm across are resolved

Map projected scale
25 cm/pixel

Map projection

Emission angle

Phase angle

Solar incidence angle
60°, with the Sun about 30° above the horizon

Solar longitude
59.8°, Northern Spring

For non-map projected images
North azimuth:  104°
Sub-solar azimuth:  317.4°
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   (618MB)

IRB color
map-projected   (315MB)

Black and white
map-projected  (353MB)
non-map           (266MB)

IRB color
map projected  (135MB)
non-map           (236MB)

Merged IRB
map projected  (163MB)

Merged RGB
map-projected  (149MB)

RGB color
non map           (206MB)
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/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.