Impact Near the South Pole
NASA/JPL/University of Arizona
Impact Near the South Pole
ESP_057152_0985  Science Theme: Impact Processes
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This image shows a new impact crater that formed between July and September 2018. It’s notable because it occurred in the seasonal southern ice cap, and has apparently punched through it, creating a two-toned blast pattern.

The impact hit on the ice layer, and the tones of the blast pattern tell us the sequence. When an impactor hits the ground, there is a tremendous amount of force like an explosion. The larger, lighter-colored blast pattern could be the result of scouring by winds from the impact shockwave. The darker-colored inner blast pattern is because the impactor penetrated the thin ice layer, excavated the dark sand underneath, and threw it out in all directions on top of the layer.

Written by: Ross A. Beyer (audio: Tre Gibbs)  (22 January 2019)
 
Acquisition date
05 October 2018

Local Mars time
15:57

Latitude (centered)
-81.485°

Longitude (East)
41.358°

Spacecraft altitude
248.0 km (154.1 miles)

Original image scale range
24.8 cm/pixel (with 1 x 1 binning) so objects ~74 cm across are resolved

Map projected scale
25 cm/pixel

Map projection
Polarstereographic

Emission angle
0.4°

Phase angle
60.7°

Solar incidence angle
61°, with the Sun about 29° above the horizon

Solar longitude
263.4°, Northern Autumn

For non-map projected images
North azimuth:  108°
Sub-solar azimuth:  44.7°
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HiView

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IRB: infrared-red-blue
RGB: red-green-blue
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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.