Honeycombs on Mars. Scientists have finally been able to explain the nature of a strange phenomenon (photo)
These unusual polygons on the surface of the Red Planet are formed during the change of seasons.
For several years, the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, using its HiRISE camera, has been recording the presence of many strange polygons on the surface of Mars. They look like honeycombs, but in fact, these formations on the surface are associated with the spread of ice and its reduction depending on the time of year on the Red Planet, according to the Daily Mail.
Scientists from Arizona State University have found that the unusual landscape of the Martian surface is the result of the spread of surface ice on Mars. According to scientists, these unusual formations in the form of polygons are formed over several years and this is due to the fact that, depending on the seasons on Mars, water ice and dry ice either increase in size or decrease.
Scientists believe that water ice and dry ice (a solid state of carbon dioxide) play an important role in shaping the appearance of the Red Planet at high latitudes. The researchers concluded that water ice that freezes into the soil divides it into polygons, and dry ice creates bends that are the boundaries of these unusual geometric shapes. Dry ice basically creates these boundaries, causing even more soil erosion in the spring, when it gets warmer on Mars.
“These polygons form over several years, the surface ice expands and shrinks, but more of them appear in the spring. It is at this time of the year that gas from dry ice destroys the soil more and the direction of the bends of the boundaries of the polygons also depends on the wind, which carries particles soil,” the scientists say.
Like previous images, scientists use new images of the surface of the Red Planet with many polygons in order to find out how ice spread over the surface of Mars in the recent past and many years ago. Such data can provide more information about the climate on the planet.
As for the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, it was poisoned into space in August 2005, and in November 2006 it began its scientific activity to study the surface of Mars. With the help of its instruments, the device maps the surface of the planet, explores minerals, searches for subsurface water and monitors the weather on Mars every day. The device, which is located at an altitude of 300 km, makes a complete revolution around the planet in 112 minutes and constantly takes pictures of the surface of Mars.
As Focus already wrote, the NASA InSight lander on Mars will “die” ahead of schedule, but before that, according to scientists, it will have time to obtain a lot of important scientific data . Given that he only had a seismometer left of the working instruments, scientists hope that the apparatus will record many new marsquakes.
As for the landing of a man on Mars, the famous English physicist believes that this will not happen until 2040- x years. As Focus already wrote, the scientist believes that the current level of technology simply does not allow this to be done earlier.