Mars Express has taken some absolutely stunning images of Mars’ ice caps!
Similarly to Earth, Mars also has polar caps. The large majority of the ice is permanent and made up of water ice and dry ice.
During the Spring and Summer, some of the dry ice sublimes into the atmosphere as carbon dioxide. As Winter approaches, the carbon dioxides chills back on the surface again.
At the North pole, practically all the dry ice sublimes in the Summer.
The European Space Agency recently captured a new amazing image using their Mars Express Orbiter of Mars’ North pole. Below, you can see dark troughs and depressions, and a light layer of ice. The troughs look almost like strokes of oil paint!
Along with stunning pictures of the ice caps, Mars Express has also taken pictures of ice sheets. The one below is called Deuteronilus Mensae, a region almost 1000 km wide and full of evidence of Martian glaciers!
And one of the most grand Martian images of all time: Mars Express’ image of the Korolev crater! An 81.4 km crater in the North of Mars. It acts as a cold trap, meaning the ice is permanent.
A quick calculation showed that there’s enough water in the crater to sustain all the golf courses in the world for 634 years! I wouldn’t be surprised if Trump started taking interest in Korolev!
Amazing work ESA! I hope to see more amazing images in the near future!
Let’s end this post with the recent image of Mars’ caps but in 3D!