ESA Mars Explorer images shows effects of wind on Mars

Shane McGlaun - Jun 2, 2015, 8:00 am CDT
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ESA Mars Explorer images shows effects of wind on Mars

We all see the effect of the wind here on Earth every day. Winds can be mild breezes that shake the leaves up to gales that can topple trees and destroy homes. On Mars, the winds can be much the same as they are here on Earth and the ESA has released a new image that shows a bit of what the wind on Mars does to the surface of the red planet.

First things first, the blue color you see in the image here isn’t water. The blue color is a byproduct of how the images are processed and is an optical illusion. A single glance seems to show lakes in the craters, but the blue color is actually darker sediment that has gathered in the craters.

The dark sediment is volcanic, basalt-rich deposits that are blown across the planet by strong winds. Speaking of strong winds the wind on the surface of Mars can reach speeds of up to 100 km/h and whip up dust from the surface of the planet to create massive dust storms that can rage for days or even weeks.

The winds erode the surface of the planet, just as the wind here on Earth erodes our planet. The craters in these images show what happens after eons of wind erosion. Some of the craters are worn flat and almost featureless with rims that have started to melt into one another. This image was snapped by the Mars Express High Resolution Stereo Camera on November 19 2014 and the resolution is about 20 meters per pixel.

SOURCE: ESA


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