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Originally posted by WarriorOfTheLight
Originally posted by charlyv
Mars seems geologically dead.
That cloud is characteristic of a plume.
My money is on a meteor strike. It makes the most sense, and this is probably the only event that could push debris and dust that high in the atmosphere.
How big was this meteor? thats one hell of a plume/cloud A meteor could not cause that much distubance
Objects with diameters smaller than 10 m (33 ft) are called meteoroids (or meteorites if they strike the ground). An estimated 500 meteorites reach the surface each year, but only 5 or 6 of these are typically recovered and made known to scientists.
And anything bigger than that are tracked by NASA's Near-Earth Object Program, or at least we would have know to watch for this event such as was the case with Shoemaker–Levy9edit on 24-3-2012 by WarriorOfTheLight because: (no reason given)
Originally posted by Illustronic
Originally posted by CCLLCCLL
reply to post by elevenaugust
Obviously an earth based space faring agency is farming oxygen on Mars. They probly creat some gigantic O2 eruption and give it time to just settle. Breathable air and a brand new real estate market. This is what happens when you let money pigs run the world.
Why would anyone go the distance to farm oxygen on Mars when it proves to have so very little? That is too much sci fi movie watching, the largest thing man has ever launched to Mars is Curiosity, and it wont get there for nearly 4 years yet.
ROFL ... if you think that is a photo of "mars" I have some seaside property in Arizona to sell you. THERE ARE NO PLANETS, just the sun, moon, earth, and stars. Look again at that photo...it looks like a smooth orange or old tennis ball with some goo on it.
Originally posted by sealing
Wouldn't this be of interest to NASA ?
I'm sure there's a nice Down to Mars explanation.
Originally posted by Phage
reply to post by abeverage
The magnetic regions of Mars are almost entirely in the southern hemisphere. While there are some magnetic regions near the north pole, they are very weak, the strongest being up to 50 nT. By comparison the Earth's field is about 58 µT at 50º latitude. More than 1,000 times stronger.
The Martian aurora (which has been observed) was associated with region with the strongest magnetic field.
astro.wsu.edu...edit on 3/24/2012 by Phage because: (no reason given)
I was in communication with researchers from NASA, JPL, the Space Science Institute shortly after the amateur community made them aware of the event and they allocated any and every resources they could muster to take closer look
So, over the past week, professionals and amateurs have been working together to collect imagery and analyze the hazy spot.
"It's most likely a condensate cloud/haze, H2O in composition," Bruce Cantor, senior staff scientist at Malin Space Science Systems, said in an email that was circulated to other experts. "Similar type of phenomena have been seen in early-morning orbital observations in the past."
Jaeschke said that he's been in contact with other astronomers who are looking at data from the Mars Color Imager, or MARCI, which is one of the instruments on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. "To date, the data shows that there was no abnormal dust activity at Mars' southern latitudes, further reducing the possibility that this was some sort of high-altitude dust storm, impact strike, or other similar phenomena," he said.
The fact that MARCI saw no abnormal cloud activity during its passes at 3 a.m. and 3 p.m. local Mars standard time suggests that the mystery cloud was a transient feature — for example, morning clouds that dissipated by the afternoon on Mars. "Still, researchers are suspect of normal cloud activity, due to the large size of the phenomenon and apparent altitude," Jaeschke said.
One of the more exotic scenarios suggests that the morning clouds were lit up by localized auroral activity, sparked by a recent string of solar storms. "Mars doesn't have a magnetic field similar to that on Earth, but Mars Global Surveyor mapped 'umbrella-like' localized fields back in 2004," Jaeschke said.
The likeliest explanation for the mystery cloud seems to be the one Cantor came up with: It's a seldom-seen but far from unprecedented manifestation of Martian morning weather. For more of the expert amateur opinion, check out the Unmanned Spaceflight website, the Cloudy Nights online forum and the Mars Observers group on Yahoo.
There are still some open questions, though. For example, why was the cloud
only visible at the specific location various imagers captured it? Why
didn't it move? What caused it to increase and then decrease in visibility?
Why did it appear around the 11th and then again around the 20th?
As to CO2 vs. H20, I would think that molecular water would be more likely
to reach a higher altitude than CO2, due to being a smaller, lighter
molecule. Also, being a polar molecule, the water can more readily align
(perhaps over the crustal magnetic field located where the cloud was
spotted) and the passing CME provided the energy necessary for condensation?
It all depends just how high up the feature was, but if it was >60km or so the problem is that the temperatures are so low there simply isn't enough vapour - even at saturation - to provide sufficient optical depth. We did some basic calculations of this in the McConnochie paper for THEMIS (on ashimaresearch.com) My guess is that Bruce was saying water in contrast to dust (i.e. really saying "not dust") - lower in the atmosphere we only think of dust or water composition, so it's sometime easy to forget the 3rd particulate, even though it dominates in the mesosphere.
(One exception to this may be somewhat lower mesospheric clouds over the region around Tharsis where very deep topographic 'convective' forcing might lift dust and water (though for water there is the issue of adiabatic cooling, just like in the "freeze drying" of rapidly upward moving air in deep convective plumes over the tropics on Earth). - but not relevant here)
Dust plumes are somewhat harder to get deep in to the atmosphere elsewhere. Even though the tops of (global or very large) dust storms can get very high, this happens because the whole atmospheric circulation gets "stoked-up" by dust absorbing sunlight and heating the atmosphere. An individual small dust storm (like the smaller events that happen all the time along the ice cap edge) don't seem to get anywhere near this deep - maybe few km to 10 or so km.
The limb object was odd in how it stood still and was maintained for several days. As with all of this, I don't actually know what it was, but my guess is that it may have been part of a large-scale standing wave in the atmosphere and we were seeing where a longitudinal zone of upwelling adiabatically pushed temperatures to the point where co2 ice condensed (which might be quite a bit below the actual CO2 frost point, depending on availability of ice nucleation). Or it might have been some very long zonal wavelength gravity (bouyancy) wave. Since it seems to have been a rare event, it must have been unusually strong of an forcing.