Somewhere down there sits the Mars Pathfinder lander and Sojourner rover. This Mars Global Surveyor Mars Orbiter Camera view of the red planet shows the region that includes Ares Vallis and the Chryse Plains upon which both Mars Pathfinder and the Viking 1 landed in 1997 and 1976, respectively. Acidalia Planitia is the dark surface that dominates the center left. The Pathfinder site is immediately south of Acidalia, just left of center in this view. Also shown--the north polar cap is at the top, and Arabia Terra and Sinus Meridiani are to the right. The bluish-white features are clouds. This is a color composite of 9 red and 9 blue image strips taken by the Mars Global Surveyor Mars Orbiter Camera on 9 successive orbits from pole-to-pole during the calibration phase of the mission in March 1999. The color is computer-enhanced and is not shown as it would actually appear to the human eye.
Malin Space Science Systems and the California Institute of Technology built the MOC using spare hardware from the Mars Observer mission. MSSS operates the camera from its facilities in San Diego, CA. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory's Mars Surveyor Operations Project operates the Mars Global Surveyor spacecraft with its industrial partner, Lockheed Martin Astronautics, from facilities in Pasadena, CA and Denver, CO.