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The dark spots in this enhanced-color infrared image are the recent impact craters that occurred in the Tharsis region between 2008 and 2014. These impact craters were first discovered by the Mars Context Camera (or CTX, also onboard the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter) as a cluster of dark spots. The meteoroid that formed these craters must have broken up upon atmospheric entry and fragmented into two larger masses along with several smaller fragments, spawning at least twenty or so smaller impact craters.
originally posted by: wildespace
(upclose photo of a drilled rock)
although it could be darker sand:
originally posted by: St Udio
the uncovered 'sand' might well be 'darker' because of possible moisture content ?? ...that possibility would change the whole site exploration selection process on the planet
New craters on Mars are easiest to locate in such dust-coated terrains, where they provide opportunistic "road cuts" that allow scientists to see beneath the dust blanket. (Audio: www.tregibbs.com. Black and white images are 5 km across; enhanced color images are less than 1 km.) www.uahirise.org...