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Mars Global Surveyor
Mars Orbiter Camera

Out of Steam

MGS MOC Release No. MOC2-1434, 16 April 2006

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 the margin of an ancient, cratered, hummocky (rough) lava flow at just the point where it encroached upon a small impact crater east of the volcano, Tharsis Tholus. The lava flow was thin enough and didn't have sufficient energy to flow into and bury the crater. Instead, it took the path of least of resistance, around the crater.
Location near: 15.0°N, 85.7°W
Image width: ~3 km (~1.9 mi)
Illumination from: lower left
Season: Northern Winter

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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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