Alluvial Fan in Crater East of Maja Valles
Alluvial Fan in Crater East of Maja Valles
PSP_006941_1825  Science Theme: Sedimentary/Layering Processes
This image shows a large symmetrical alluvial fan at the mouth of a small channel along an unnamed crater. Alluvial fans with a well-defined channel source area are relatively uncommon on Mars.

This fan has a rib-like outer margin and many more terrace-like scarps upslope near the channel mouth. These terraces may indicate the outer margin of sediment deposits during each “pulse” of deposition. Further study of these types of alluvial fans may shed light on past sedimentary environments and conditions on Mars.

Written by: Frank Chuang  (27 February 2008)

This is a stereo pair with PSP_007732_1825.
Acquisition date
19 January 2008

Local Mars time

Latitude (centered)

Longitude (East)

Spacecraft altitude
271.0 km (168.4 miles)

Original image scale range
27.6 cm/pixel (with 1 x 1 binning) so objects ~83 cm across are resolved

Map projected scale
25 cm/pixel and North is up

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Phase angle

Solar incidence angle
40°, with the Sun about 50° above the horizon

Solar longitude
19.7°, Northern Spring

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North azimuth:  98°
Sub-solar azimuth:  15.1°
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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.