January 1998 Volume 7 Number 1

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Nirgal Vallis, Mars

Nirgal Vallis, Mars. Mars Global Surveyor's camera took this oblique picture on September 21, 1997. Nirgal Vallis is one of many valleys on Mars that are thought to have been carved by running water at some time in the past. Channels such as this may be more than 3 and a half billion years old. The MGS image reveals that the floor of Nirgal Vallis is covered with sand dunes. These dunes result from the action of wind-- today Mars is a very dry planet and water does not flow there.

The picture in the upper left shows a regional view of Nirgal Vallis from the 1970s Viking orbiters. The location of the new MGS image is indicated in the regional view (box). "Nirgal" is the Babylonian word for "Mars". The MGS image is centered near 28.5 degrees south, 41.6 degrees west. Sunlight is coming from the left. Image courtesy Malin Space Science Systems, JPL, and NASA.

For TES News Article Related to This Figure, See...

MGS and TES Update, December 19, 1997
by Greg Mehall

TES News is published quarterly by the Arizona Mars K-12 Education Program. This newsletter may be copied for EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY.

EDITED BY Kenneth S. Edgett, Arizona Mars K-12 Education Program, Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona, USA.
E-mail: ken.edgett@asu.edu