September 5, 2017

Leeward and poleward

A Piece of Mars: The sharp line in this 0.625×0.625 km (0.39×0.39 mi) scene is the crest of a long dune in Mars’ southern hemisphere. The sunlit side is also the lee side: the bright streaks are thin sand avalanches […]
August 14, 2017

Wind and maybe water too

A Piece of Mars: Along the right side of this 0.5×0.5 km (0.31×0.31 mi) scene is the rim of a crater – the stripes are layers exposed (and then perhaps draped by falling ejecta) as the crater formed. To the […]
February 21, 2017

Who wins in the fight of wind vs. ice?

A Piece of Mars: This is the crest of one of the largest dunes on Mars (0.5×0.5 km or 0.31×0.31 mi). The wind mostly blows from the right, slowly pushing sand up the windward slope. But frost accumulates on (and […]
September 19, 2016

Light and dark

A Piece of Mars: This 0.96×0.54 km (0.6×0.34 mi) late winter scene is a study in contrast. The dark top half is uniformly rippled. This is the shady surface of the main windward side of one of Mars’ biggest dunes, […]
January 21, 2015

Wind eroded mantle

A piece of Mars: The curving ridge of a mountain has signs of many small landslides. Mantled on top of these is an older set of landslides that has been partially eroded away. The rippled edge of this older deposit […]
November 17, 2014

Textured gullies

A piece of Mars. These are gullies on a martian hillside (upslope is to the upper right). Water may be what forms the channels, carrying soil and rocks downslope. The textured pattern of the lower slope is caused by the […]
May 24, 2013

Where does martian sand come from?

A piece of Mars: The source of dune sand on Mars is normally something of a mystery. But here on the interior wall of a small crater it appears that small gullies have eroded sediment from the wall and carried […]
February 3, 2013

Dunes being buried

A piece of Mars: Most dunes on Mars are the freshest, youngest features around. Not so here. The bright dunes near the bottom here are slowly being buried by debris coming down from the gullies on the slope, coming from […]