Astronomy Picture of the Day

Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer.

April 16, 1998
See Explanation.  Clicking on the picture will download 
 the highest resolution version available.

Mars: Cydonia Close-Up
Credit: Mars Global Surveyor Project, NASA

Explanation: The Mars Global Surveyor spacecraft has returned another close-up of the Cydonia region on Mars. Orbiting over clear Martian skies at a range of about 200 miles, the Mars Orbiter Camera looked down on features known as the "City" on Mars and produced a high resolution image covering a swath around 1.5 by 15 miles at a pixel size of about 8.2 feet. This cropped portion of the processed image shows an area approximately 1.5 miles wide. Heavily weathered hills and pocked surfaces suggest the erosion of layers of the ancient Martian crust.

Tomorrow's picture: Viking, where are you?

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Authors & editors: Robert Nemiroff (MTU) & Jerry Bonnell (USRA)
NASA Technical Rep.: Jay Norris. Specific rights apply.
A service of: LHEA at NASA/ GSFC
&: Michigan Tech. U.