Exploring Mars Maps

A New Mars Map from the Mars Odyssey

A screen grab of a zoomed-in portion of the THEMIS mars map. Click to enzoomify. Courtesy NASA/JPL and THEMIS team, University of Arizona.

Well, this is cool.  You can browse the most-accurate map of Mars, created by images from the mars Odyssey spacecraft, at your leisure at the click of a mouse.

The map consists of nearly 21,000 images from the Thermal Emission Imaging System ( THEMIS). This is a  a multi-band infrared camera on Odyssey built and tended by researchers at Arizona State University’s Mars Space Flight Facility in Tempe, in collaboration with the folks at NASA JPL.  This work has been an eight-year-long project.  The were smoothed, matched, blended and cartographically controlled to make a giant mosaic.
So, check out the link above. You can pan around the images, zoom in quite closely, and almost get a feel for “being there” on the Red Planet. At full zoom, the smallest surface details are 330 feet wide.

One Comment

  1. Wow, the resolution is amazing. It’s interesting that in infrared camera can create that kind of detail on the surface. I wonder if Mar’s lack of substantial atmosphere helps in that process by creating more uniform surface temperatures and less atmospheric distortion.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.