Malin Space Science Systems banner

Mars Global Surveyor
Mars Orbiter Camera

Caught in the Act

MGS MOC Release No. MOC2-1205, 5 September 2005

Medium-sized view of MGS MOC Picture of the Day, updated daily
NASA/JPL/Malin Space Science Systems

This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows a dust devil caught in the act of creating a dark streak on the floor of the large, south mid-latitude crater, Mendel. Dozens of other dark streaks mark the paths of earlier dust devils. Dust devil streaks at southern middle and high latitudes are seasonal features; they are erased each winter by thin deposits of dust and frost, and they are re-created each spring and summer by new dust devils.
Location near: 58.9°S, 199.4°W
Image width: ~3 km (~1.9 mi)
Illumination from: upper left
Season: Southern Spring

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.

MSSS logo To MSSS Home Page