On the Hunt for New Impact Craters
NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

On the Hunt for New Impact Craters
ESP_027077_1785  Science Theme: Impact Processes
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How exactly can we tell if an impact crater is new?

In this observation, we see a dark spot with a larger, rayed "blast zone" that was also apparent in a Context Camera image taken in 2011 (an instrument with a larger footprint than HiRISE and also on the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter). However, a THEMIS image of the same area acquired in 2009 does not show the dark spot at all.

This is a great example of using three different instruments to view the same area not only to look for changes in the Martian landscape, but also to use the resolution of HiRISE to determine if this is indeed a new impact site.

This caption is based on the original science rationale.

Written by: HiRISE Science Team   (15 August 2012)



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Acquisition date:06 May 2012 Local Mars time: 3:15 PM
Latitude (centered):-1.345° Longitude (East):279.729°
Range to target site:264.9 km (165.6 miles)Original image scale range:26.5 cm/pixel (with 1 x 1 binning) so objects ~80 cm across are resolved
Map projected scale:25 cm/pixel and North is upMap projection:Equirectangular
Emission angle:8.8° Phase angle:60.8°
Solar incidence angle:54°, with the Sun about 36° above the horizon Solar longitude:106.6°, Northern Summer
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North azimuth:97° Sub-solar azimuth:37.6°
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North azimuth:270°Sub solar azimuth:211.5°

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For information about NASA and agency programs on the Web, visit: http://www.nasa.gov. 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. Lockheed Martin Space Systems is the prime contractor for the project and built the spacecraft. The HiRISE camera was built by Ball Aerospace and Technology Corporation and is operated by the University of Arizona. The image data were processed using the U.S. Geological Survey’s ISIS3 software.