Sedimentary Layers in West Candor Chasma
Sedimentary Layers in West Candor Chasma
ESP_026378_1730  Science Theme: Sedimentary/Layering Processes
West Candor Chasma in central Valles Marineris contains some of the thickest of the fine-grained layered deposits on Mars.

We can’t see the grain sizes with HiRISE, but as the material erodes in the wind it disappears—apparently carried away by the wind—so the grains must be small. The layers may have been deposited from windblown materials, fall of volcanic sediments, or carried in by water, or all of the above.

Subsequently, the layers may have been altered by groundwater, producing hydrated minerals such as sulfates. The enhanced colors in the cutout are related to the minerals or to overlying dust or sand. The dark blue sharp-crested ridges are sand dunes.

Written by: Alfred McEwen (narration: Tre Gibbs)  (25 April 2012)

This is a stereo pair with ESP_028422_1730.
Acquisition date
12 March 2012

Local Mars time

Latitude (centered)

Longitude (East)

Spacecraft altitude
259.0 km (161.0 miles)

Original image scale range
26.7 cm/pixel (with 1 x 1 binning) so objects ~80 cm across are resolved

Map projected scale
25 cm/pixel and North is up

Map projection

Emission angle

Phase angle

Solar incidence angle
57°, with the Sun about 33° above the horizon

Solar longitude
82.4°, Northern Spring

For non-map projected images
North azimuth:  98°
Sub-solar azimuth:  42.3°
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IRB color
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Black and white
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non-map           (551MB)

IRB color
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non-map           (475MB)

Merged IRB
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RGB color
non map           (458MB)
Map-projected, reduced-resolution
Full resolution JP2 download
Anaglyph details page

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Color label
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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

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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.