Mars Global Surveyor
Mars Orbiter Camera
Impact Crater in Northern Elysium Planitia
MGS MOC Release No. MOC2-161, 19 July 1999
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This crater in northern Elysium Planitia is a little more than
twice the diameter of the famous Meteor Crater in Arizona, U.S.A. It
formed by the blast caused by the high velocity impact of a meteorite.
The ejecta--the material blown out of the crater and deposited
around the outside of the hole--appears to be somewhat thicker than
most martian ejecta deposits. The ejecta shows radial grooves and the
surface of the deposit appears cracked and broken. These features,
taken together, suggest that the ejecta might have contained some
amount of water--as well as rocky debris--and that this material was
viscous (e.g., "like molasses in January") and flowed outward,
away from the impact explosion when it occurred. The Mars Global
Surveyor Mars Orbiter Camera obtained this picture in July 1998.
Illumination is from the right/upper right.
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, CA. 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, CA and Denver, CO.
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