MGS MOC Release No. MOC2-393, 16 June 2003
This is a late southern summer Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) view of the sand dune field in Richardson Crater. In winter and spring, the dunes are covered by carbon dioxide frost. Dozens of MOC images acquired over the past several Mars years (available in the MOC Gallery) show the progression of defrosting patterns on this dune field. In summer, there is no carbon dioxide frost. Small dark streaks on some of the dune slip face slopes are the sites of the most recent avalanches of sand. The slip faces also indicate that the general direction of sand transport is from right (east) to left (west). This image is near 72.4°S, 180.6 °W. The picture is illuminated from the upper left.