What is it: A rift valley called Noctis Labyrinthus (“Labyrinth of Night”)
When it was released: January 24, 2024
where is she: Between Valles Marineris and Tharsis Mars
Why is it so special: Noctis Labyrinthus is unlike anywhere else in the world Solar System. About 739 miles (1,190 km) long, 19 miles (30 km) wide, and 4 miles (6 km) deep, it is a rift valley region Mars Studded with sand dunes, valleys and landslides.
A new, categorized, zoomable image was posted this week by European Space Agency (ESA) comes from data collected by the European Space Agency's Mars Express spacecraft, which has been orbiting the red planet since December 2003. In October 2023, the ESA released a report Video from the same area Which used images from Mars Express and topographic data to recreate the 3D scene.
In the new image, the original ground level can still be seen, although much of the ground has been eroded. This is because volcanic activity caused the surface to expand upward, thinning the planet's crust and forming cracks.
Noctis Labyrinthus lies between the western edge of the Marineris Valley, an extensive valley system known as the “Grand Canyon” of Mars, and Tharsis, the largest volcanic region on Mars, which contains 12 large volcanoes.
During nearly 20 years of scientific research, Mars Express has provided stunning images of the Red Planet and traced the history of water across its surface, providing evidence that Mars once had environmental conditions suitable for life.
How to see it in the night sky: Although Mars can be seen just before sunrise, the planet appears brightest near opposition, when it is closest to Earth. This happens every 26 months, and will next occur on January 15, 2025.
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