Astronomy Picture of the Day
February 1, 2015

Features of Argyre Planitia (Part I - CTX Frame)
Features of Argyre Planitia (Part I - CTX Frame)

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

As the so-called "Gullies" (---> a Gully is a Ravine USUALLY formed by the Action of Running Water) form on Slopes, Sediment can become deposited to form Lobe-shaped Fans. Gullies can form with Flowing Water, but they don't have to (---> this means that the Flowing Water is NOT a so-called "condicio sine qua non" of the Gullies' formation): sometimes they can be formed by the Dry Flow of Sand and very fine Dust Grains.

This HiRISE image, obtained by the NASA - Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter on November 16, 2014, shows us several seemingly Active Gullies and their associated Fans located in the Martian Region known as Argyre Planitia.

Mars Local Time: 15:41 (Middle Afternoon)
Coord. (centered): 43,360° South Lat. and 311,185° East Long.
Spacecraft altitude: 249,7 Km (such as about 155,063 miles)
Original image scale range: 50,0 cm/pixel (with 2 x 2 binningso objects1 mt and 85 cm across are resolved
Map projected scale: 50 cm/pixel
Emission Angle: 0,3°
Phase Angle: 51,4°
Solar Incidence Angle: 51° (meaning that the Sun was about 39° above the Local Horizon at the time the picture was taken)
Solar Longitude: 234,3° (Northern Fall - Southern Spring)
Credits: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona
Additional process. and coloring: Lunar Explorer Italia

This picture (which is a NASA - Original Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter b/w and NON-Map-Projected CTX frame identified by the serial n. ESP_038931_1355) has been additionally processed, reduced in size to fit the page, contrast enhanced, Gamma corrected, 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 Reconnaissance 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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