Mars Global Surveyor
Mars Orbiter Camera

Fretted Terrain Valley

MGS MOC Release No. MOC2-1081, 4 May 2005

NASA/JPL/Malin Space Science Systems

This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows the floor of a fretted terrain valley in the Coloe Fossae region. Valleys found at north middle latitudes, such as this one, often have odd linear features on them. When seen at much lower resolution by the Viking Orbiters in the late 1970s, investigators assumed that the linear features indicated flow of ice or ice-rich debris, as might occur in a glacier or rock glacier. MOC images show little evidence to support the notion that these materials flow; indeed, similar ridges occur in closed valleys, from which nothing can flow. This picture shows a close-up of one such closed valley.
Location near: 35.3°N, 303.1°W
Image width: ~3 km (~1.9 mi)
Illumination from: lower left
Season: Northern Summer

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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.

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