NASA/JPL/Malin Space Science Systems
This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows a crater in Arabia Terra that has been exhumed. The picture was acquired less than 1 week ago, on 9 December 2003. The crater was buried beneath layered material, but erosion later brought it back to the surface. A thick blanket of dust mantles the scene; dark streaks have formed as some of this dust slid down the crater walls. Old, dust-covered ripples of windblown sediment occur on the floor of the exhumed crater. The image is located near 20.9°N, 320.7°W, and covers an area 3 km (1.9 mi) wide; 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.