Thu. Feb 9th, 2023

A unique photo of Mars’ polar ice cap

A photograph released by the European Space Agency (ESA) shows a fantastic landscape póof the Red Planet’s north pole. The Mars ice cap shown here is crisscrossed by deep canyons arranged in a spiral. The image covers an area of about one million kilometersóin square.

Ice cover at the pole póThe northern Red Planet is a permanent feature of the Martian landscape. Mars’ polar cap the róIt differs from Earth’s in that it consists of frozen water with added carbon dioxide. During the Red Planet’s winter season, carbon dioxide adds about a meter of ice thickness to the structure. During the Martian summer, CO2 is released into the atmosphere.

Photo: ESA

A characteristic element of the ice spiral is the structure cutting almost to the pół Chasma Boreale canyon (seen in the photo above). Its length is about 560 kilometersów. It is about two kilometers deep. The spiral structure was formed by strong winds.

The Mars ice cap itself is composed of many layers of ice and dust and is a kind of chronicle of the planet’s history.

The photo was taken by the Mars Express probe, whichóra has been orbiting Mars since June 2003. Its task is to make a topographic map of the planet using a high-resolution camera. The probe is also studying the Red Planet’s atmosphere, its composition and circulation.