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Mars Global Surveyor
Mars Orbiter Camera

Secondary Craters

MGS MOC Release No. MOC2-1243, 7 October 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 cluster of craters in far western Arabia Terra. The crater cluster is oriented along a line that runs nearly east-west (left-right) across the scene. Clusters of craters positioned along a line like this are secondary craters -- that is, they formed as the result of a much larger meteor, asteroid, or cometary impact somewhere else in the region. These craters do not form from the object that impacted Mars to form the larger, primary crater; these are the product of the impact of the rocks and debris thrown out by the larger impact.
Location near: 14.9°N, 19.3°W
Image width: ~3 km (~1.9 mi)
Illumination from: lower left
Season: Northern Autumn

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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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