Southern Winter Frost Accumulations
This enhanced color HiRISE image shows several craters somewhere in the southern mid-latitudes of Mars. It is currently mid-winter in the Southern hemisphere, so we can observe accumulating frost (neon blues) on pole-facing slopes (i.e. south-facing) and in shadowed areas.
However, the bluish deposits and ejecta deposits associated with the smaller crater we see are not consistent with frost deposits. These materials are most likely iron-bearing minerals that have not been previously oxidized (i.e., rusted), and have only recently been exposed to the surface when this small well-preserved crater was formed.reviously oxidized (i.e., rusted), and have only recently been exposed to the surface when this small well-preserved crater was formed.
The University of Arizona, Tucson, operates HiRISE, which was built by Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp., Boulder, Colo. NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter Project for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington.