Seasonal Flows in the Central Mountains of Hale Crater
NASA/JPL/University of Arizona
Seasonal Flows in the Central Mountains of Hale Crater
ESP_040170_1440  Science Theme: Mass Wasting Processes
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Recurring slope lineae (RSL) are active flows on warm Martian slopes that might be caused by seeping water. One of the most active sites known on Mars in in the central peaks (uplifted mountains of deep bedrock) of Hale Crater.

This image shows RSL extending downhill from bedrock cliffs, mostly towards the northwest (upper left). This image was acquired in middle summer when RSL are most active in the southern mid latitudes.

The RSL in Hale have an unusually “reddish” color compared to most RSL, perhaps due to oxidized iron compounds, like rust. Since HiRISE color is shifted to infra-red wavelengths, they are actually especially bright the near-infrared just beyond the range of human vision.

The Hale RSL are also unusual because they began activity much earlier than most RSL sites in the middle southern latitudes, and were well-developed in the early spring (see ESP_038073_1440). If seeping water causes RSL in Hale crater, it must be rich in salts to lower its freezing point significantly below the freezing point of pure water.

Written by: Alfred McEwen (audio: Tre Gibbs)   (8 April 2015)

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Acquisition date
20 February 2015

Local Mars time:
14:35

Latitude (centered)
-35.667°

Longitude (East)
323.483°

Range to target site
258.1 km (161.3 miles)

Original image scale range
25.8 cm/pixel (with 1 x 1 binning) so objects ~77 cm across are resolved

Map projected scale
25 cm/pixel and North is up

Map projection
Equirectangular

Emission angle:
7.1°

Phase angle:
42.9°

Solar incidence angle
36°, with the Sun about 54° above the horizon

Solar longitude
294.9°, Northern Winter

North azimuth:
96°

Sub-solar azimuth:
15.5°
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NASA/JPL/University of Arizona



Postscript
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.