Mars

Mars in Ultraviolet by MAVEN

NASA’s MAVEN orbiter has taken several views of Mars in the ultraviolet light (which is light beyond what our eyes can see). Doing this can reveal new features or systems taking place on the planet.

The images were taken at different times in Mars orbit. Here we present the images next to generated images of Mars for easy comparison.

The camera has taken three ultraviolet wavelength-ranges and these are represented with the colours red, green, and blue. In the images atmospheric ozone appears purple, while clouds and hazes appear white or blue. The surface can appear tan or green (depending on how the images have been optimized to show more detail.)

The first images shows Argyre Planitia (an impact basin) near centre, and top-left the end of Valles Marineris (a long, wide, deep canyon). It’s viewed “upwards” from the southern tip.

July 2022, Southern hemisphere’s summer season.

The second image shows Acidalia Planitia (a dark plain) at centre. The view is titled towards the northern hemisphere, the north pole just visible. Atmospheric ozone around the northern pole is clearly highlighted in purple.

January 2023, Northern hemisphere’s spring

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