This site uses cookies to improve your experience and to provide services and advertising. By continuing to browse, you agree to the use of cookies described in our Cookies Policy. You may change your settings at any time but this may impact on the functionality of the site. To learn more see our Cookies Policy.
OK
Dublin: 12 °C Saturday 26 May, 2018
Advertisement

Here are 40 amazing photos of Mars taken by the Nasa Orbiter

The Mars Orbiter has been taking stunning photos of the planet for nearly 10 years – here are the cream of the most recent crop.

1 One of Mars' polar ice caps Source: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS

MARS DEFINITELY DESERVES its ‘Red Planet‘ nickname, since it’s basically covered in reddish-brown rust.

But scientists use such a range of photographing techniques that the planet can end up a rainbow of colours.

NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter started circling the planet in 2006, and since then its camera has been busy capturing gorgeous – and scientifically valuable – images of Mars.

That camera, called HiRISE, takes images so detailed scientists can examine the planet’s features at the scale of just a few feet.

We combed through the camera’s latest update to find some of the most beautiful pictures. Scientists haven’t had a chance to dig their teeth into them yet – but when they do, who knows what incredible discoveries they’ll make.

A possible landing site for the ExoMars mission, which the European Space Agency is running.

2 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

A North Pole dune field nicknamed “Kolhar” after Frank Herbert’s fictional world.

3 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Cerberus Palus crater showing off layered sediments.

4 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Glacial terrain looks strangely iridescent.

5 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

A steep slope in Eastern Noctis Labyrinthus.

6 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Dunes in a Martian crater. The red bar is an artifact of NASA’s image processing.

7 Source: http://www.uahirise.org/ESP_046209_1390

A possible landing site for the Mars 2020 mission NASA wants to launch in a few years.

8 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

The Tharsis region, which is the most volcanic part of Mars.

9 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Terrain near the Martian equator.

10 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Steep-sided craters on a Martian plain.

11 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Ceraunius Fossae is a region dominated by volcanic flows and large cracks.

12 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Layers in Martian buttes found in a region called West Arabia.

13 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Beautiful texture in the region called North Sinus Meridiani.

14 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Wind-shaped features on Mars — the green bar is leftover from processing the image.

15 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

A recent impact crater on Mars (we’re pretty sure no one put out a giant cigarette here).

16 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

A crater on Arcadia Planitia, a large flat region of Mars.

17 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

The creation of ‘fans’ around dunes may help scientists understand seasonal changes on Mars.

18 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

A picture of Utopia Planitia, a large plain on Mars.

19 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Mars in all its two-toned glory.

20 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Seasonal dunes on Mars nicknamed ‘Buzzel’.

21 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Ridges cross the Nepenthes Mensae region, which is often referred to as a river delta for its striking pattern.

22 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

The edges of a debris apron, where cliff material eroded away.

23 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Alluvial fans are some of the evidence that scientists used to confirm there was once water on Mars.

24 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

A small but recent impact crater.

25 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Scientists use HiRISE to monitor how gullies change over time, which could help them figure out what created them.

26 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Exposed bedrock on the Capri Chasma, which may once have been filled with flood waters.

27 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

‘Spiders’ are eruptions of dust caused by the way the Martian surface warms and cools.

28 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Eos Chasma is part of Valles Marineris, the largest canyon on Mars.

29 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Another gully scientists are having HiRISE monitor.

30 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

A pedestal crater, where a crater has eroded away at different rates based on different rock types.

31 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Watching Mars defrost.

32 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Measuring changes in albedo, or how much light is reflected off the surface.

33 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

A basin floor.

34 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Another possible landing site for the Mars 2020 mission.

35 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

A sinuous ridge on fretted terrain, which may be evidence of Mars’ glacial past.

36 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Fractures in Utopia Planitia line up eerily neatly.

37 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Scientists think these may be pieces of rock blown away by an impact.

38 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Yardangs, which are sharp ridges scraped away by Mars’ harsh winds.

39 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Near the North Pole, in an area nicknamed ‘Windy City.’

40 Source: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

- Meghan Bartels

Read: Secrecy, terrorism and no egos: What it’s really like to work as a CIA agent

Read: Inside Area 404 – Facebook’s heavy-duty tech lab that Zuckerberg isn’t even allowed enter

  • Share on Facebook
  • Email this article
  •  

Published with permission from:

Business Insider
Business Insider is a business site with strong financial, media and tech focus.

Read next:

COMMENTS (23)