THEMIS: Lava levees on Ascraeus Mons’ upper slopes

Ascraeus lava flows with levees (THEMIS_IOTD)20170831)THEMIS Image of the Day, August 31, 2017. This image of the flank of Ascraeus Mons shows several individual flows where the sides are higher than the center. These are called leveed flows, as the outer margin acts as a levee containing the flow as it continues downslope. Levees grow as the flow margins start to cool. The hotter liquid lava continues as long as the source flows.

NASA’s Mars Odyssey spacecraft has spent over 15 years in orbit around Mars, circling the planet more than 69,000 times. It holds the record for longest working spacecraft at Mars. THEMIS, the IR/VIS camera system, has collected data for the entire mission and provides images covering all seasons and lighting conditions.

Over the years many features of interest have received repeated imaging, building up a suite of images covering the entire feature. From the deepest chasma to the tallest volcano, individual dunes inside craters and dune fields that encircle the north pole, channels carved by water and lava, and a variety of other feature, THEMIS has imaged them all.

For the next several months the Image of the Day will focus on the Tharsis volcanoes, the various chasmata of Valles Marineris, and the major dunes fields. We hope you enjoy these images!

More THEMIS Images of the Day by geological topic.

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