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A grid of small polygons on the Martian rock surface near the right edge of this view may have originated as cracks in drying mud more than 3 billion years ago. Multiple images of this view were combined for this view from NASA's Curiosity Mars rover.
A grid of small polygons on the Martian rock surface near the right edge of this view may have originated as cracks in drying mud more than 3 billion years ago. Multiple images of this view were combined for this view from NASA's Curiosity Mars rover.

Possible Signs of Ancient Drying in Martian Rock

The network of cracks in this Martian rock slab called 'Old Soaker' may have formed from the drying of a mud layer more than 3 billion years ago. The view combines three images taken by NASA's Curiosity Mars rover on Dec. 31, 2016.
The network of cracks in this Martian rock slab called 'Old Soaker' may have formed from the drying of a mud layer more than 3 billion years ago. The view combines three images taken by NASA's Curiosity Mars rover on Dec. 31, 2016.

Possible Mud Cracks Preserved in Martian Rock

Shown in this image from NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter are fan-shaped deposits emerging from regions of steep topography called alluvial fans. Alluvial fans on Mars are thought to be ancient and record past episodes of flowing water.
Shown in this image from NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter are fan-shaped deposits emerging from regions of steep topography called alluvial fans. Alluvial fans on Mars are thought to be ancient and record past episodes of flowing water.

The Case of the Martian Boulder Piles

NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter shows Mars' northern-most sand dunes beginning to emerge from their winter cover of seasonal carbon dioxide (dry) ice. Dark, bare south-facing slopes are soaking up the warmth of the sun.
NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter shows Mars' northern-most sand dunes beginning to emerge from their winter cover of seasonal carbon dioxide (dry) ice. Dark, bare south-facing slopes are soaking up the warmth of the sun.

Sand Dunes in Spring

This color view of the parachute and back shell that helped deliver NASA's Curiosity rover to the surface of the Red Planet was taken by the High-HiRISE camera on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter.
This color view of the parachute and back shell that helped deliver NASA's Curiosity rover to the surface of the Red Planet was taken by the High-HiRISE camera on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter.

Relics of Rover's Landing

These two views from NASA's Curiosity rover, acquired specifically to measure the amount of dust inside Gale Crater, show that dust has increased over three days from a major Martian dust storm.
These two views from NASA's Curiosity rover, acquired specifically to measure the amount of dust inside Gale Crater, show that dust has increased over three days from a major Martian dust storm.

Curiosity's View of the June 2018 Dust Storm

This enhanced color image from NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter shows eroded bedrock on the floor of a large ancient crater.
This enhanced color image from NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter shows eroded bedrock on the floor of a large ancient crater.

Bedrock on a Crater Floor

This dark mound, called 'Ireson Hill,' rises about 16 feet (5 meters) above redder layered outcrop material of the Murray formation on lower Mount Sharp, Mars, near a location where NASA's Curiosity rover examined a linear sand dune in February 2017.
This dark mound, called 'Ireson Hill,' rises about 16 feet (5 meters) above redder layered outcrop material of the Murray formation on lower Mount Sharp, Mars, near a location where NASA's Curiosity rover examined a linear sand dune in February 2017.

'Ireson Hill' on Mount Sharp, Mars

A ridge called 'Rocheport' on the western rim of Mars' Endeavour Crater spans this mosaic of images from the panoramic camera (Pancam) on NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity.
A ridge called 'Rocheport' on the western rim of Mars' Endeavour Crater spans this mosaic of images from the panoramic camera (Pancam) on NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity.

Mars Rover Opportunity's Panorama of 'Rocheport'

The sources of channels on the north rim of Hale Crater show fresh blue, green, purple and light toned exposures under the overlying reddish dust, captured by NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter.
The sources of channels on the north rim of Hale Crater show fresh blue, green, purple and light toned exposures under the overlying reddish dust, captured by NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter.

Sources of Gullies in Hale Crater

This small mesa is one of several surrounded by sand dunes in Noctis Labyrinthyus, an extensively fractured region on the western end of Valles Marineris, as seen by NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter.
This small mesa is one of several surrounded by sand dunes in Noctis Labyrinthyus, an extensively fractured region on the western end of Valles Marineris, as seen by NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter.

A Mesa in Noctis Labyrinthus

NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter spies Capri Chasma, located in the eastern portion of the Valles Marineris canyon system, the largest known canyon system in the Solar System.
NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter spies Capri Chasma, located in the eastern portion of the Valles Marineris canyon system, the largest known canyon system in the Solar System.

Hematite-Rich Deposits in Capri Chasma

This image from NASA's Mars Reconnaisance Orbiter covers a small central portion of the Hellas Planitia basin, the largest visible impact basin in the Solar System, and shows a dune field with lots of dust devil trails.
This image from NASA's Mars Reconnaisance Orbiter covers a small central portion of the Hellas Planitia basin, the largest visible impact basin in the Solar System, and shows a dune field with lots of dust devil trails.

Squiggles in Hellas Planitia

A ridge called 'Rocheport' on the western rim of Mars' Endeavour Crater spans this mosaic of images from the Pancam on NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity. Enhanced color to make differences in surface materials more easily visible.
A ridge called 'Rocheport' on the western rim of Mars' Endeavour Crater spans this mosaic of images from the Pancam on NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity. Enhanced color to make differences in surface materials more easily visible.

Mars Rover Opportunity's Panorama of 'Rocheport' (Enhanced Color)

This image from NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) shows the location with the most impressive known gully activity in Mars' northern hemisphere.
This image from NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) shows the location with the most impressive known gully activity in Mars' northern hemisphere.

A Winter's View of a Gullied Crater

This image from NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter is of Saheki Crater, about 84 kilometers across, and located in the Southern highlands of Mars, to the north of Hellas Planitia.
This image from NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter is of Saheki Crater, about 84 kilometers across, and located in the Southern highlands of Mars, to the north of Hellas Planitia.

A Sneak Peek into Saheki's Secret Layers

In this region of Lyot Crater, NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter shows a field of classic barchan dunes. Sand dunes often accumulate in the floors of craters on Mars.
In this region of Lyot Crater, NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter shows a field of classic barchan dunes. Sand dunes often accumulate in the floors of craters on Mars.

Once in a Blue Dune

This image from NASA's Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity rover shows dark, stick-shaped features clustered on this Martian rock about the size of grains of rice.
This image from NASA's Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity rover shows dark, stick-shaped features clustered on this Martian rock about the size of grains of rice.

Stick-Shape, Rice-Size Features on Martian Rock 'Haroldswick'

Researchers used the Mastcam on NASA's Curiosity Mars rover to gain this detailed view of layers in 'Vera Rubin Ridge' from just below the ridge.
Researchers used the Mastcam on NASA's Curiosity Mars rover to gain this detailed view of layers in 'Vera Rubin Ridge' from just below the ridge.

Martian Ridge Looming Above Curiosity Prior to Ascent

Holden Crater was once filled by at least two different lakes. The sediments deposited in those lakes are relatively light-toned where exposed in this observation from NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter.
Holden Crater was once filled by at least two different lakes. The sediments deposited in those lakes are relatively light-toned where exposed in this observation from NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter.

Lakebeds in Holden Crater

These North Polar layered deposits, composed of ice, captured by NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter spacecraft, show what looks like drag folds, where rock layers bend (fold) before they break in a fault.
These North Polar layered deposits, composed of ice, captured by NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter spacecraft, show what looks like drag folds, where rock layers bend (fold) before they break in a fault.

Drag Folds in the North Polar Layered Deposits

Two images from the Mast Camera onboard NASA's Curiosity rover depict the change in the color of light illuminating the Martian surface since a dust storm engulfed Gale Crater. At left shows the 'Duluth' drill site on May 21, 2018; at right from June 17.
Two images from the Mast Camera onboard NASA's Curiosity rover depict the change in the color of light illuminating the Martian surface since a dust storm engulfed Gale Crater. At left shows the 'Duluth' drill site on May 21, 2018; at right from June 17.

Duluth After Dust Storm

This image from NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter shows a hill with a central crater. Such features have been interpreted as both mud volcanoes (really a sedimentary structure) and as actual volcanoes (the erupting lava kind).
This image from NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter shows a hill with a central crater. Such features have been interpreted as both mud volcanoes (really a sedimentary structure) and as actual volcanoes (the erupting lava kind).

A Volcano of Mud or Lava?

NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter observed sand dunes in the north polar regions of Mars showing light coatings of pale orange dust blown partially across the dark basaltic sand. Around the edges of the dunes, patches of seasonal dry ice remain.
NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter observed sand dunes in the north polar regions of Mars showing light coatings of pale orange dust blown partially across the dark basaltic sand. Around the edges of the dunes, patches of seasonal dry ice remain.

Dust and Frost

This is a false color image of Rabe Crater captured by NASA's 2001 Mars Odyssey spacecraft. In this combination of filters 'blue' typically means basaltic sand. Rabe Crater is 108 km (67 miles) across.
This is a false color image of Rabe Crater captured by NASA's 2001 Mars Odyssey spacecraft. In this combination of filters 'blue' typically means basaltic sand. Rabe Crater is 108 km (67 miles) across.

Investigating Mars: Rabe Crater

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