It looks like a great trail of pure snow in the middle of a desert. But the truth is that it was a shot taken from the Mars Express orbit European Space Agency (ESA) crater Королев, and Mars. And the banking layer that can be seen in the picture is not snow, but water ice, present throughout the year.
The picture is a mosaic composed of five bands of different images taken in a variety of high resolution orbit stereoscopes (HRSC) Mars Express.
Korolev, which is 82 km wide and located in the mountains north of Mars, in the immediate vicinity big dune field, known as Olimpia Undae, is a good example Martian crater well preserved.
That's what the Korolys look like, a crater of ice on the planet Mars. (ESA)
There is an ice layer in the center of the crater Thickness 1.8 km. This ice complex makes the glacier containing it 2,200 km3 of ice It's not polar on Mars. It is always present because of the phenomenon, known as "cold trap": there is a distance of 2 km between the terrain and the edge of the crater.
The deepest part of the crater contains ice, which cools the air above this ice deposit. Cold air is heavier than hot, descending, creating a kind of cold, perennial air on the ice, as if it was a protective shield. This cold layer is what guarantees it the ice does not heat up or disappear.
Mission Mars Ekpress It was launched on June 2, 2003, and for six months it reached the Red Planet. It went into orbit around Mars on December 25th, so this month is fulfilled 15 years since the beginning of the program the science of this ship.
The Marshal Crater gets its name, Королев, from a Russian scientist who was considered the father of space technology, Russian Сергей Королев.
Among other things, Korolev launched a number of well-known missions, such as the Sputnik program, which put the first artificial satellites in orbit around the Earth. He also took part in the East and Voxod programs of the research of the Employment Focal Point; The East was a spacecraft that took the first man, Yuri Gagarin, into space in 1961. He also worked on precursors for the successful Soiuz.
Source: La Vanguardia