Syrtis Major

Scaled Image

Image Credit: NASA/JPL/ASU

About this image

This image is from the region of Syrtis Major, which is dominated by a low-relief shield volcano. This area is believed to be an area of vigorous aeolian activity with strong winds in the east-west direction. The effects of these winds are observed as relatively bright streaks across the image, extending from topographic features such as craters. The brighter surface material probably indicates a smaller relative particle size in these areas, as finer particles have a higher albedo. The bright streaks seen off of craters are believed to have formed during dust storms. A raised crater rim can cause a reduction in the wind velocity directly behind it, which results in finer particles being preferentially deposited in this location. In the top half of the image, there is a large bright streak that crosses the entire image. There is no obvious topographic obstacle, therefore it is unclear whether it was formed in the same manner as described above. This image is located northwest of Nili Patera, a large caldera in Syrtis Major. Different flows from the caldera eruptions can be recognized as raised ridges, representing the edge of a flow lobe.

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


Image ID: 
V01246011 (View data in Mars Image Explorer)
2002-03-26 21:41
Wed, 2002-05-01
1024 pixels (18 km)
3648 pixels (65 km)
0.01801 km/pixel
0.018141 km/pixel


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