Monday, March 8, 2010

The Sands of Mars

Mars photos from NASA APOD.

You must ENLARGE these photos to maximize awesomeness.


Thawing sand dunes:



Barchan sand dunes blown by the wind take a liquid aspect:



Landslides of black sand create the impression of a surreal forest of ebony yucca trees:



This crater, the Echus Chasma, is hypothesized to have been one of the major water sources on Mars. These cliffs are ~4km high and were possibly carved out by running water. At one time this may have been the greatest waterfall in the solar system:



Martian landscape marked by mysterious streaks of black sand:



Strange white finger-like rock formations revealed at the bottom of an impact crater:



Avalanche:



A weird 150m-wide pit in the side of a volcano. Infrared thermal signatures suggest this is a very deep hole leading to an underground cavern system. Several of these pits have been identified: