Mars and the Amazing Technicolor Ejecta Blanket
NASA/JPL/University of Arizona
Mars and the Amazing Technicolor Ejecta Blanket
ESP_050281_1505  Science Theme: Composition and Photometry


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A close-up image shows the exposed bedrock of an ejecta blanket of an unnamed crater in the Mare Serpentis region of Mars. Ejecta, when exposed, are truly an eye-opening feature, as they reveal the sometimes exotic subsurface, and materials created by impacts. This ejecta shares similarities to others found elsewhere on Mars, which are of particular scientific interest for the extent of exposure and diverse colors. (For example, the Hargraves Crater ejecta, in the Nili Fossae trough region, was once considered as a candidate landing site for the next NASA Mars rover 2020.

The colors observed in this picture represent different rocks and minerals, now exposed on the surface. Blue in HiRISE infrared color images generally depicts iron-rich minerals, like olivine and pyroxene. Lighter colors, such as yellow, indicate the presence of altered rocks.

The possible sources of the ejecta is most likely from two unnamed craters. How do we determine which crater deposited the ejecta?

A full-scale image shows numerous linear features that are observed trending in an east-west direction. These linear features indicate the flow direction of the ejecta from its unnamed host crater. Therefore, if we follow them, we find that they emanate from the bottom of the two unnamed craters. If the ejecta had originated from the top crater, then we would expect the linear features at the location of our picture to trend northwest to southeast.

Written by: Gavin Tolometti, Livio L. Tornabene and Jon Kissi (audio: Tre Gibbs)  (12 July 2017)
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Acquisition date
18 April 2017

Local Mars time:
14:13

Latitude (centered)
-29.096°

Longitude (East)
38.871°

Range to target site
254.1 km (158.8 miles)

Original image scale range
50.8 cm/pixel (with 2 x 2 binning) so objects ~153 cm across are resolved

Map projected scale
50 cm/pixel and North is up

Map projection
Equirectangular

Emission angle:
0.9°

Phase angle:
40.0°

Solar incidence angle
41°, with the Sun about 49° above the horizon

Solar longitude
351.4°, Northern Winter

For non-map projected images
North azimuth:  97°
Sub-solar azimuth:  38.7°
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IRB color
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Merged IRB
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Merged RGB
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RGB color
non-map projected

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map-projected   (94MB)

IRB color
map-projected   (55MB)

JP2 EXTRAS
Black and white
map-projected  (38MB)
non-map           (59MB)

IRB color
map projected  (12MB)
non-map           (64MB)

Merged IRB
map projected  (107MB)

Merged RGB
map-projected  (96MB)

RGB color
non map           (59MB)
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
B&W label
Color label
Merged IRB label
Merged RGB label
EDR products
HiView

NB
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

USAGE POLICY
All of the images produced by HiRISE and accessible on this site are within the public domain: there are no restrictions on their usage by anyone in the public, including news or science organizations. We do ask for a credit line where possible:
NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

POSTSCRIPT
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.