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The 1997 Spring Regression of the Martian South Polar Cap: Mars Orbiter Camera Observations

Icarus

By:
, , , , , , , , , , , , and
DOI: 10.1006/icar.1999.6289

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Abstract

The Mars Orbiter cameras (MOC) on Mars Global Surveyor observed the south polar cap of Mars during its spring recession in 1997. The images acquired by the wide angle cameras reveal a pattern of recession that is qualitatively similar to that observed by Viking in 1977 but that does differ in at least two respects. The 1977 recession in the 0?? to 120?? longitude sector was accelerated relative to the 1997 observations after LS = 240??; the Mountains of Mitchel also detached from the main cap earlier in 1997. Comparison of the MOC images with Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter data shows that the Mountains of Mitchel feature is controlled by local topography. Relatively dark, low albedo regions well within the boundaries of the seasonal cap were observed to have red-to-violet ratios that characterize them as frost units rather than unfrosted or partially frosted ground; this suggests the possibility of regions covered by CO2 frost having different grain sizes. ?? 2000 Academic Press.

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
The 1997 Spring Regression of the Martian South Polar Cap: Mars Orbiter Camera Observations
Series title:
Icarus
DOI:
10.1006/icar.1999.6289
Volume
144
Issue:
2
Year Published:
2000
Language:
English
Larger Work Type:
Article
Larger Work Subtype:
Journal Article
Larger Work Title:
Icarus
First page:
410
Last page:
418