Astronomy Picture of the Day
December 30, 2015

Features of Hebes Mensa
Features of Hebes Mensa

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

In this nice VIS image, taken by the NASA - Mars Odyssey Orbiter on Deecmber, 12th, 2005, and during its 17.727th orbit around the Red Planet, we can see part of the Peri-Equatorial Region known as Hebes Mensa: the Central Highland Feature located inside Hebes Chasma. Hebes Chasma, in particular, is a completely Closed Surface Depression, with no Outflows leading to the nearby located Echus Chasma (to the West), Perrotin Crater (to the South/West), or the Great Valles Marineris Canyon System (to the South).

Its maximum extents are approximately 320 Km (such as about 198,72 miles) from East to West, about 130 Km (such as approx. 80,73 miles) from North to South, and 5 to 6 Km (roughly 3,105 to 3,726 miles) in depth. At the center of the Depression lies Hebes Mensa, a large Mesa (---> Plateau, Flat Surface) rising some 5 Km above the Valley Floor, and nearly as high as the surrounding Terrain. As a matter of fact, this Central Plateau (such as Hebes Mensa) makes Hebes Chasma a unique Valley in the whole Martian Geography.

Latitude (centered): 1,06768° South
Longitude (centered): 283,84500° East
Instrument: VIS

This image (which is an Original Mars Odyssey Orbiter falsely colored and Map-Projected frame published on the NASA - Planetary Photojournal with the ID n. PIA 20224) has been additionally processed, magnified to aid the visibility of the details, contrast enhanced an 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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