Astronomy Picture of the Day
February 16, 2013

Features of Juventae Chasma
Features of Juventae Chasma

Credits: NASA/JPL/Arizona State University (ASU) - Credits for the additional process. and color.: Dr Paolo C. Fienga/Lunar Explorer Italia/IPF

This VIS image, taken by the NASA - Mars Odyssey Orbiter during its 48.863rd orbit around the Red Planet, shows us a portion of the Western Margin of Juventae Chasma and the large Dunefield that is located at the base of the Chasma Cliff. Juventae Chasma is a vary huge "Box Canyon" (---> a Box Canyon is a small Ravine or, like in this case, a large Canyon with steep Walls on three sides of it, which therefore allows access and egress only through its "mouth"), which opens to the North and forms the Outflow Channel known as Maja Valles.

Juventae Chasma is located to the North of the Valles Marineris Canyon System and it cuts more than 5 Km (approx. 3,1 miles) into the Plains of Lunae Planum. As it is shown it today's APOD, the Floor of Juventae Chasma is partly covered by Sand Dunes. Inside Juventae there is also an approx. 2,5 Km (such as about 1,55 miles) high Mountain that, as it was confirmed by the ESA - Mars Express Orbiter, is composed of Sulphate Deposits; furthermore, the NASA - Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter also discovered the presence of Sulphates, Hydrated Sulphates, and Iron Oxides in very many areas of this Martian location.

Latitude: 4,23348° South
Longitude: 297,286° East
Instrument: VIS
Captured: December, 19th, 2012

This frame (which is an Original Mars Odyssey Orbiter b/w frame published on the NASA - Planetary Photojournal with the ID n. PIA 16246) has been additionally processed and then colorized in Absolute Natural Colors (such as the colors that a human eye would actually perceive if someone were onboard the NASA - Mars Odyssey Orbiter and then looked down, towards the Surface of Mars), by using an original technique created - and, in time, dramatically improved - by the Lunar Explorer Italia Team.

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