Mars Global Surveyor
Mars Orbiter Camera

Polygon Patterns

MGS MOC Release No. MOC2-511, 12 October 2003

NASA/JPL/Malin Space Science Systems

This August 2003 Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows polygon patterns, enhanced by frost in the cracks that outline the polygon forms, in the south polar region of Mars. On Earth, patterns such as this usually indicate the presence of ice in the subsurface. The same might be true for Mars. This picture is located near 70.6°S, 309.5°W, and covers an area 3 km (1.9 mi) wide. The image is illuminated by sunlight from the upper left.

Tips for Media Use

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.

To MSSS Home Page