NASA/JPL/Malin Space Science Systems
The martian north polar ice cap is surrounded by fields of dark, windblown sand dunes. This March 2003 Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows dunes near 76.5°N, 264.7°W. The steep dune slip faces indicate wind transport of sand from the lower left toward the upper right. Sunlight illuminates the scene from the lower left.
Malin Space Science Systems and the California Institute of Technology built the MOC using spare hardware from the Mars Observer mission. MSSS operates the camera from its facilities in San Diego, California. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory's Mars Surveyor Operations Project operates the Mars Global Surveyor spacecraft with its industrial partner, Lockheed Martin Astronautics, from facilities in Pasadena, California and Denver, Colorado.