NASA/JPL/Malin Space Science Systems
The upper right (northeast) quarter of this Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows a concentrated field of small impact craters. The features form a broad line running approximately diagonal from northwest toward southeast. These craters pocked windblown ripples as well as the smooth-surfaced terrain. These are secondary craters. That is, they formed second, as the result of a larger impact, probably within a hundred kilometers or so of this site. Secondary craters form from impact of the debris kicked-up by the larger impact event. Instead of rocks from space (like a meteor), these were formed by rocks from a nearby place on Mars. This image is located near 29.7°S, 249.0°W. The picture covers an area about 3 km (1.9 mi) wide. Sunlight illuminates the scene from the upper 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.