Investigating Mars: Coprates Chasma

Scaled Image

Image Credit: NASA/JPL/ASU

About this image

Coprates Chasma is one of the numerous canyons that make up Valles Marineris. The chasma stretches for 960 km (600 miles) from Melas Chasma to the west and Capri Chasma to the east. Landslide deposits, layered materials and sand dunes cover a large portion of the chasma floor. This image is located in central Coprates Chasma. The brighter materials at the bottom of the image are layered deposits. It is unknown how deep these canyon deposits were when they formed. The layering is only visible due to erosion, making it difficult to estimate the original thickness. While layered deposits can be found on the floor of Coprates Chasma, they are most commonly found along the lower elevations and at the bottom of the cliff faces in the canyon.

The Odyssey spacecraft has spent over 15 years in orbit around Mars, circling the planet more than 69000 times. It holds the record for longest working spacecraft at Mars. THEMIS, the IR/VIS camera system, has collected data for the entire mission and provides images covering all seasons and lighting conditions. Over the years many features of interest have received repeated imaging, building up a suite of images covering the entire feature. From the deepest chasma to the tallest volcano, individual dunes inside craters and dune fields that encircle the north pole, channels carved by water and lava, and a variety of other feature, THEMIS has imaged them all. For the next several months the image of the day will focus on the Tharsis volcanoes, the various chasmata of Valles Marineris, and the major dunes fields. We hope you enjoy these images!

Please see the THEMIS Data Citation Note for details on crediting THEMIS images. 


Image ID: 
V51810003 (View data in Mars Image Explorer)
2013-08-18 22:56
Fri, 2017-10-06
1024 pixels (18 km)
3648 pixels (63 km)
0.017491 km/pixel
0.0176426 km/pixel


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