Mars Exploring The Planets Mars

Valles Marineris

228k GIF
- 91k JPEG
Image processed by U.S. Geological Survey
Named in honor of Mariner 9, the canyons of Valles Marineris stretch nearly a fifth of the way around Mars. They formed from faulting of the crust very early in Martian history, followed by modification of their walls by erosion.
Candor Chasma

258k GIF
- 87k JPEG
Image processed by U.S. Geological Survey

Within the canyons of Candor Chasma are numerous overlapping landslides, fractured blocks of ancient lake deposits, and craters buried by wind-blown sediment. Volcanic deposits of lava are present elsewhere in the canyon, indicating a complex origin by faulting of the crust, volcanism, and ponded water.

Amazonis Planitia

245k GIF
- 94k JPEG
Image processed by U.S. Geological Survey
The boundary between the southern cratered terrain on Mars and the northern plains is characterized by channels and an irregular eroded cliff. This region is a potential landing site for a future mission to Mars that could sample old cratered highlands, young smooth plains, and channel deposits of a variety of ages.


Seasons || Volcanoes || Canyons & Plains || Craters || Water? || Wind
The Surface of Mars

Mars and its Moons || Observation || Exploration || Viking Mission || Surface
Global View || Meteorite || Imagery || Links

Exploring The Planet

©2002 National Air and Space Museum