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Mars Global Surveyor
Mars Orbiter Camera

Smooth Transition

MGS MOC Release No. MOC2-1381, 22 February 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 a transition from one of the many layered troughs in the north polar region of Mars to the relatively homogeneous-looking upper surface of the polar cap. The difference in brightness across this scene is a function of several factors, one of which is the amount of dust versus that of ice in any given location. The bright material that dominates the scene is largely water ice.
Location near: 83.2°N, 297.8°W
Image width: ~3 km (~1.9 mi)
Illumination from: lower right
Season: Northern Summer

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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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