The massive Valles Marineris canyon has been revealed in stunning new images taken by the European Space Agency. Mars Fast.
At 2,485 miles long, over 124 miles wide, and over 4 miles deep, the Red Planet’s canyon makes America’s canyon look downright insignificant by comparison. Valles Marineris would cover the distance from the extreme north of Norway to the extreme south of Sicily.
The new image shows two trenches, or chasma, that form a portion of the western part of Valles Marineris. On the left is the 521-mile-long lus Chasma and on the right is the 500-mile-long Tithonium Chasma.
The image uses data from the High Resolution Stereo Camera (HRSC) aboard Mars Express and is a “true color” image, meaning it shows what the human eye would see if looking at this region of Mars.
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This oblique perspective view of Tithonium Chasma (pictured above), which is part of the Valles Marineris canyon structure on Mars, was generated from the digital terrain model and the nadir and color channels of the Mars stereo camera. high resolution on the European Space Agency’s Mars Express.
The massive canyon of the Red Planet has been revealed in new images released by ESA. The new image shows two trenches, or chasma, that form a portion of the western part of Valles Marineris. On the left is the 521-mile-long lus Chasma and on the right is the 500-mile-long Tithonium Chasma.
At 2,485 miles long, over 124 miles wide, and over 4 miles deep, the Red Planet’s canyon makes America’s Grand Canyon look downright insignificant by comparison.
This image of Tithonium Chasma shows parallel lines and debris piles (upper right) indicating a recent landslide
The image above is an illustration of an oblique view of the Valles Marineris giant canyon system on Mars. The canyons were formed by a combination of geological faulting, landslides, and erosion by wind and ancient water flows.
When viewed in terms of elevation, the tallest mountain in the Alps, Mont Blanc, which rises more than 15,000 feet above sea level, would dwarf if placed within Tithonium Chasma.
Unlike America’s Grand Canyon, which was formed about 5 million years ago when the Colorado River eroded rock, the Red Planet’s huge canyon is thought to have been formed by shifting tectonic plates.
At the top of Tithonium Chasma, a patch of dark sand, which may have come from a nearby volcanic region, adds color contrast to the image.
Alongside the dark sand dunes are two light-toned mounds, one of which is cut in half by the top edge of the image.
This photograph taken by Mars Express shows a perspective view of a mesa in the eastern regions of Valles Marineris, the largest canyons in the Solar System.
The Red Planet’s massive Valles Marineris, stretching nearly a quarter of the planet’s circumference, is seen above (center) in this image from the Granger Collection.
Lus and Tithonium Chasmata are seen above. The area outlined by the bold white box indicates the area imaged by the Mars Express High Resolution Stereo Camera on April 21, 2022 during orbit
MARS: THE BASICS
Mars is the fourth planet from the sun, with a dusty, cold and ‘almost dead’ desert world with a very thin atmosphere.
Mars is also a dynamic planet with seasons, ice caps, canyons, extinct volcanoes, and evidence that it was even more active in the past.
It is one of the most explored planets in the solar system and the only planet that humans have sent rovers to explore.
A day on Mars is a little over 24 hours long and a year is 687 Earth days.
facts and figures
orbital period: 687 days
surface area: 144.8 million km²
distance from the sun: 227.9 million km
Radio: 3,389.5 kilometers
moons: Phobos, Deimos
Those mounds are actually gigantic, towering over 9,800 feet. For perspective, Mount Hesperus in Alaska, which is the highest peak in the Revelation Mountains, rises 9,828 feet.
The mound surfaces have been significantly eroded by strong Mars winds: typical wind speeds on the Red Planet average 125 miles per hour, with gusts reaching 300-375 miles per hour.
A series of smaller bulges can be seen between the two large mounds.
Mars Express has previously found water-bearing sulfate minerals in this region, according to ESA.
The space agency says this suggests the bulges formed when liquid that once filled the chasm evaporated, but scientists debate this point.
“In the lower right part of the mound that we see completely (upper right in the second perspective view), we can see parallel lines and piles of debris that indicate a recent landslide,” says the ESA in a statement.
That evidence can also be seen in the topographic image below.
“The landslide was caused by the collapse of the canyon wall on the right, and is likely to have occurred relatively recently because it has not been heavily eroded,” explains ESA.
The twisted floor of Ius Chasma is equally fascinating.
“As the tectonic plates moved apart, they seem to have caused irregular triangles of rock to form that look like a row of shark teeth.”
Over time, the rock formations have collapsed and eroded.
ESA’s Mars Express has been orbiting the Red Planet since 2003 to carry out a wide range of scientific experiments, including imaging the surface of Mars, mapping its minerals, identifying the composition and circulation of its atmosphere, and probing beneath it. of its bark.
NASA’s Mars Perseverance Rover has been explorer the Red Planet for almost a year and a half. The US space agency wants to send humans to Mars in the 2030s.
Elon Musk, the founder of spacexhas long said that humans must colonize Mars and become a multiplanetary species in order to preserve consciousness and spread it out into the cosmos.
Pictured above: A color-coded topographic image showing Ius and Tithonium Chasmata, which are part of the Valles Marineris canyon structure on Mars, which was created from data collected by ESA’s Mars Express.
The image above is a computer illustration of the Valles Marineris canyon on the Red Planet, which is the largest canyon in the solar system.
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