- The European Space Agency (ESA) shared an impressive video of Mars’ huge valley network called Noctis Labyrinthus. These valleys are approximately 1,190 kilometers long, 30 kilometers wide and 6 kilometers deep, which is the length of Italy.
- The landscape shown in the video differs markedly from other parts of Mars, clearly presenting “grabens” where the crust has collapsed relative to their surroundings. These features emerged as a result of intense volcanic activity in the Tharsis region of Mars.
- ESA’s Mars Express spacecraft has been carrying out various scientific missions by examining the surface of Mars for the last 20 years. An impressive 3D landscape was created by combining the images used in this expedition with a digital terrain model. These unique valleys of Mars offer important information about the planet’s past.
The European Space Agency (ESA) has shared an impressive video showing a vast system of long and deep valleys on Mars called Noctis Labyrinthus. This valley network stretches for approximately 1,190 kilometers. Created with images acquired by ESA’s Mars Express spacecraft and its High Resolution Stereo Camera (HSRC) during eight orbital flights, this excursion offers a view significantly different from other parts of Mars.
Alongside the video showing this spectacular view, ESA clearly shows areas called “grabens” where the crust has collapsed relative to their surroundings. These valleys are 30 kilometers wide and 6 kilometers deep. These features arise as a result of upward arching, stretching and tectonic collapse of the Martian crust, which occurred as a result of intense volcanic activity in the nearby Tharsis region. The highest plateaus shown in the video represent the original surface levels before disintegration.
ESA also notes many interesting features, such as “Massive landslides covering the slopes and bottoms of the valleys.” Large dunes formed by sand carried both upward and downward by Martian winds are also observed on some valley slopes.
The Mars Express spacecraft has been orbiting this distant planet for the past 20 years, studying its surface, mapping its minerals, analyzing its atmosphere and performing a variety of other scientific tasks. It is also investigating how Mars’ various events interact by delving beneath the crust.
To create the visualization shown in the video, ESA combined images from Mars Express with topographic data from a digital terrain model to create the impressive 3D landscape.
Compiled by: Ayça Ayaz