NASA/JPL/Malin Space Science Systems
|This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows the very edge of the south polar residual cap of Mars. The bright areas, which appear somewhat like pieces of sliced Swiss cheese, are composed mainly of frozen carbon dioxide. The scarps around the edges of the carbon dioxide mesas have been retreating at a rate of roughly 3 meters (~3 yards) per martian year; in this case, exposing a darker surface that lies below.|
|Location near: 85.4°S, 88.6°W|
|Image width: ~3 km (~1.9 mi)|
|Illumination from: upper left|
|Season: Southern Summer|
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.