MARS

Mottled dunes near Curiosity's landing site
Published 5/1/2012 in Lori Fenton's Blog Author lfenton
A piece of Mars: Mottled dunes hint at different wind gusts, in this field of dunes located near the landing site for the next rover to go to Mars (named Curiosity). The bluish areas are most likely the more recently active patches -- think of wind gusts suddenly causing sand to hop along the ground, scouring off dust (like a brillo pad) and revealing the true colors of the dunes. The small scratches on the dunes (the ones that make the dunes look like troll doll hair) are actually sand ripples, and they have been observed to move over time.... read more ❯

Of sandy lanes
Published 4/30/2012 in Lori Fenton's Blog Author lfenton
A piece of Mars: Of Sandy Lanes. The yellowish-tan rocks are tall high-standing hills that have been scoured by the wind. Dark sand slowly cuts down the whiter rocks in the valleys, slowly creating majestic lanes bordered by steep, sharp hills. My guess is the sand is moving from top to bottom in this image. (HiRISE ESP_023051_1865) read more ❯

Echoes of the past
Published 4/29/2012 in Lori Fenton's Blog Author lfenton
These dunes are quite unusual for Mars, and difficult to interpret. The thick blue and white stripes are dunes in their current location, but subtle stripes above them seem to indicate former positions of dunes, small pieces that got left behind as the dunes marched toward the bottom of the image. (HiRISE ESP_022645_1505) read more ❯

The Phoenix mission on Mars
Published 2/21/2009 in Franck Marchis Blog Author Franck Marchis
Hello, Yesterday at UC-Berkeley, I attended a talk given by Peter Smith, PI of the the Phoenix mission. Peter gave us an overview of the mission, its concept and a few information about the scientific results. A serie of articles will be most likely published soon in a special issue of Science, so i will not go through the scientific results in ¬†details in this post. To summarize them and to impress people during your next dinner, you should know that the mission allows the detection of water ice in the soil, shows the absence of sulfate on the surface but... read more ❯