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Mars Revisited



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Telltale Heat
Images by Arizona State University and NASA/JPL

Day and night infrared images of the same cratered Martian terrain in Chryse basin help scientists decipher the planet's geology. Look at it this way: Light areas are warmer, dark areas are cooler. So in the daytime image (left) the light areas likely show loosely consolidated material that warms up quickly during the day, such as dust, sand, and small rocks—probably the ejecta from the impact of the meteorite that formed these craters. The nighttime image (right) indicates that the loose material has quickly shed its heat. Lighter regions show bedrock that retains heat at night. For scientists, this is a whole new way to look at Mars.





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