Scientists have discovered on Mars wind moves sand along the surface of the planet
The researchers studied the migration 495 dunes on Mars and found that some of them are moving with unexpected speed. About it reports “ScienceAlert”.
In particular, using images taken by the HiRISE camera of the spacecraft Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, the researchers analyzed changes in the position about five hundred of the dunes, whose height reached 120 meters. Previously, researchers could only guess exactly how the Martian sand is moving through the cracks and impact craters in the allowed conditions of the atmosphere.
Now, however, scientists were able to discover that in the conditions of Mars, their speed was lower than on the Ground.
Despite occasional dust storm on the planet, the Martian winds in General are not inclined to move so much sand. The atmosphere of Mars is thin and weak, and the average surface atmospheric pressure is only 0.6 percent of the atmospheric pressure at sea level. It makes the winds of the red planet is quite weak.
“On Mars is just not enough wind power to move a significant amount of material on the surface,” says scientist a planetary scientist Matthew Chojnacki of the University’s Lunar and Planetary laboratory of the University of Arizona.
The space researchers were not sure that the Martian Sands still have the ability to move actively. Large-scale features — the best places to look for changes, so the team chose a little sand to explore.
Scientists chose 54 of the dune field, covering 495 individual dunes ranging in height from 2 to 120 meters (6 to 400 feet), and studied their images taken by the HiRISE camera on Mars reconnaissance orbit for periods of two to five years to map the volume of sand and migration rate of the dunes.
“We wanted to know: is the movement of sand evenly across the planet or it is amplified in some regions compared to others?”, – reported Hojnacki
Scientists have measured the speed and volume with which the dunes move across the Martian surface. In some cases, the rate of migration of Martian dune was about 50 times lower than those of their earthly counterparts. However, in three cases the Martian dunes showed remarkable agility.
We are talking about areas such as the Great Sirte, the mountain chain Hellespontus Montes and circumpolar sand massifs Olympia Undae and Abalos.
This study may be useful for the implementation of plans for the possible visit of humanity on Mars.
We will remind, on Mars discovered something inexplicable, even scientists are confused.
As reported Politeka, NASA published a detailed plan of space exploration.
Also Politeka wrote that revealed the biggest danger of travelling to Mars.