NASA’s Mars Curiosity Rover studies Mars’ dark liner dunes
3 mins read

NASA’s Mars Curiosity Rover studies Mars’ dark liner dunes

NASA’s Mars curiosity Rover was studying the dark liner sand dunes on Mars surface for over 16 weeks. Finally, with some evidence in hand, the curiosity Rover have sent some extraordinary photos of these Sand dunes to NASa’s headquarters. Let’s see what scientists have to say about this.

Initially, NASA’s Mars Curiosity Rover was constructed to find out what changes the Martin winds of Mars are bringing o t its surface. It was assumed that the AMrtin winds are responsible for creating these dark linear dunes on the Mars mount.

Observations made by Mars Curiosity Rover:

Mars curiosity Rover was constructed to find out about the patterns of dark dunes formed on the mounts of Mars due to Martin winds. From February 2017 to April 2017, the curiosity Rover examined four different sites of linear dark dunes on Mars. The first investigation of dark linear sand dunes of Mars has been named as the two-phase investigation of Bagnold dunes. As the rover will complete its movement around Mars and return to Earth, it will bring the sample of dunes for future analysis.

The main objective of Mars curiosity Rover is to find out whether or not the Martin winds of Mars are affecting the patterns of dark dunes and even if they are responsible for changing the patterns of dunes like that on Earth then what is the fundamental mechanism behind it. The main characteristics of these winds are that they flow relatively close to each other and on the same side of the mountains.

The picture sent by the curiosity rover to NASA’s headquarters have revealed that these dunes are uphill and are located in the southward area at 1.6 kilometres of elevation. The dunes are either located adjacently or randomly and are known as Bagnold dunes. Right now Curiosity rover is climbing the Gale Caters of  Mars to find more details about the dark dunes.

The opinion of the scientists:

Once the pictures were sent to the NASA headquarters, the scientists steadily studied them and found out some interesting facts. According to Mathieu Laporte of Caltech, in Pasadena, California, the one who helped the curiosity team to finish up the final tests of the projects, ” At these linear dunes, the wind regime is more complicated than at the crescent dunes we studied earlier. There seems to be more contribution from the wind coming down the slope of the mountain here compared with the crescent dunes farther north. There was another key difference between the first and second phases of our dune campaign, besides the shape of the dunes. We were at the crescent dunes during the low-wind season of the Martian year and at the linear dunes during the high-wind season. We got to see a lot more movement of grains and ripples at the linear dunes.”

Unfortunately, Mars curiosity Rover’s wind sensing environmental monitoring system has stopped working. Hence the research team is now using change detection pairs of images taken by the rover at different times of its movement to access the data of the movement in Mars.