Astronomy Picture of the Day
January 15, 2015

Unnamed Crater with Gullies and Landslides in Acidalia Planitia
Unnamed Crater with Gullies and Landslides in Acidalia Planitia

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

In this (just as usual), very interesting VIS image, taken by the NASA - Mars Odyssey Orbiter on August, 20th, 2002, and during its 3.022nd orbit around the Red Planet, we can see (almost entirely) an Unnamed Impact Crater located in the Martian Northern Hemisphere's Region known as Acidalia Planitia. If you pay particular attention to the South/Western Side of this Unnamed Crater, you will be able to notice a (apparently), very soft and smooth orange-colored Landslide (most likely made of small-grained Sand and Dust) which exteends itself from its Inner Rim (and, partially, even the Outer one) up to the Floor.

A small and degraded Uplift can also be seen near the center of this Impact Feature while, on its Western Margin, a number of well-shaped and deep Gulllies characterize the Inner Slopes. Last, but not least, a relatively small - and almost completely buried (by Sand and Dust) Impact Crater - can be spotted on the upper left (Sx) side of the frame, just a few tens of meters (or, probably, even less) outside the North/Western Rim of the Larger Impact Crater, at about 11 o'clock of the picture.

Right below this abovementioned Minor Impact Crater, from the Inner Rim to Floor of the larger one, another Landslide (this clearly containing Rocks and small Boulders) can be seen, thus proving that some kind of activity (NOT Aeolian, in our opinion, as IPF), must have caused the verification of this (probably Gravity Wasting-related) Event.

Latitude (centered): 42,5734° North
Longitude (centered): 328,6800° East
Instrument: VIS

This image (which is an Original Mars Odyssey Orbiter false colors and Map-Projected frame published on the NASA - Planetary Photojournal with the ID n. PIA 19016) has been additionally processed, magnified to aid the visibility of the details, contrast enhanced and sharpened, Gamma corrected and then re-colorized in Absolute Natural Colors (such as the colors that a normal 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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