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Mars Revisited



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Ice Age
Art by Kees Veenenbos; Data: Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter Science Team (left). MSSS and NASA/JPL (right).

The dusty red planet we know today might have endured a decidedly frosty past. As the planet's poles tilted more toward the sun—higher obliquity—the poles warmed and water ice was redeposited closer to the equator. To show how Mars may have looked some 50,000 to 500,000 years ago, an artist draped winter white over actual topographic data. Today Mars has a lower obliquity and ice is only stable at the poles, as seen in the Mars Orbiter Camera wide-angle view (right).





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