Follow this link to skip to                                      the main content

Feature

Text Size

Mars Odyssey Imagery
03.13.06
 
Video: Flight Through Mariner Valley:
Viewing options: + Streaming video | + Quicktime download (15Mb)

Mars Canyon with Los Angeles for Scale
Mars Canyon with Los Angeles for Scale
Image above:

A "Grand Canyon of Mars" slices across the Red Planet near its equator. This canyon -- Valles Marineris, or the Mariner Valley -- is 10 times longer and deeper than Arizona's Grand Canyon, and 20 times wider. As the picture shows, you could drop the whole Los Angeles basin into a small part of Valles Marineris and leave plenty of room to spare. In length, the canyon extends far enough that it could reach across the United States from East Coast to West Coast, while its rim stands more than 25,000 feet high, nearly as tall as Earth's Mount Everest.

This scene comes from "Flight Through Mariner Valley," an exciting video produced for NASA by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. The video takes viewers on a simulated flight into Valles Marineris, where they explore its scenic wonders as their imaginary scout ship dives low over landslides and races through winding canyons.

The video features high-resolution images from Arizona State University's Thermal Emission Imaging System multi-band camera on NASA's Mars Odyssey. The images, which show details as small as 300 meters (1,000 feet) across, were taken at infrared wavelengths during the Martian daytime. Scientists joined hundreds of individual frames from the camera into a giant mosaic, then colored the mosaic to approximate how Mars would appear to the human eye.

To give the mosaic depth and height, moviemakers fitted it to a computerized topographic model for Valles Marineris. This was developed using hundreds of thousands of altitude measurements by the Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter, an instrument on NASA's Mars Global Surveyor spacecraft.

Credit: NASA/JPL/Arizona State University.

+ High resolution image

Winding Side Canyon (Louros Valles)
scene from Flight Through Mariner Valley showing Louros Valles
Image above:
Viewers experience roller-coaster twists and turns as they fly up a winding tributary valley that feeds into Valles Marineris, the "Grand Canyon of Mars." Geologists think channels such as these were carved by water as it escaped through faults and cracks in the subsurface. This caused the ground above it to collapse, leaving a meandering channel that resembles a stream valley on Earth.

This scene comes from "Flight Through Mariner Valley," an exciting video produced for NASA by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. The video takes viewers on a simulated flight into Valles Marineris, where they explore its scenic wonders as their imaginary scout ship dives low over landslides and races through winding canyons.

The video features high-resolution images from Arizona State University's Thermal Emission Imaging System multi-band camera on NASA's Mars Odyssey. The images, which show details as small as 300 meters (1,000 feet) across, were taken at infrared wavelengths during the Martian daytime. Scientists joined hundreds of individual frames from the camera into a giant mosaic, then colored the mosaic to approximate how Mars would appear to the human eye.

To give the mosaic depth and height, moviemakers fitted it to a computerized topographic model for Valles Marineris. This was developed using hundreds of thousands of altitude measurements by the Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter, an instrument on NASA's Mars Global Surveyor spacecraft.

Credit: NASA/JPL/Arizona State University.

+ High resolution image

High View of Melas
scene from Flight Through Mariner Valley showing high view of Melas

Image above:
Soaring high above Valles Marineris, the "Grand Canyon of Mars," viewers look down and catch a sight resembling parts of the desert West of the United States, but on a vastly greater scale. Here the canyon averages over a hundred miles wide, and its floor is heaped with rocks, sediments, and landslide debris. Within the canyon walls lie possibly hundreds of layers filling many pages of Mars' geologic record.

This scene comes from "Flight Through Mariner Valley," an exciting video produced for NASA by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. The video takes viewers on a simulated flight into Valles Marineris, where they explore its scenic wonders as their imaginary scout ship dives low over landslides and races through winding canyons.

The video features high-resolution images from Arizona State University's Thermal Emission Imaging System multi-band camera on NASA's Mars Odyssey. The images, which show details as small as 300 meters (1,000 feet) across, were taken at infrared wavelengths during the Martian daytime. Scientists joined hundreds of individual frames from the camera into a giant mosaic, then colored the mosaic to approximate how Mars would appear to the human eye.

To give the mosaic depth and height, moviemakers fitted it to a computerized topographic model for Valles Marineris. This was developed using hundreds of thousands of altitude measurements by the Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter, an instrument on NASA's Mars Global Surveyor spacecraft.

Credit: NASA/JPL/Arizona State University.

+ High resolution image

More images [1] | 2