A strange long cloud has formed several times at once Martian volcano Scientists dropped it and named it.
Meet Arsia Mons Elongated Cloud, or AMEC. Its long bright trail has become a familiar feature on the peak known as Arsia Mons in the southeast of the more famous Olympus Mons. Although the cloud comes and goes over the volcano, scientists say it is not formed from the volcano itself. And it’s timely: scientists associated with Europe’s Mars Express Orbiter waited for it to reappear on its annual cycle.
“We are investigating this intriguing phenomenon and were hoping to see such cloud form right now,” Jorge Hernandez-Bernal, a Ph.D. Candidate and lead author of ongoing studies at the University of Basque Country in Spain, Said in a statement Issued by the European Space Agency (ESA), which operates the spacecraft.
Photos: View of the red planet from Europe’s Mars Express
“This long cloud makes every appearance Martian year During this season around the southern solstice, and repeats for 80 days or more, “said Hernandez-Bernal. However, we do not yet know if the clouds are always very influential.”
So far, scientists have seen the cloud up to 1,100 miles (1,800 kilometers), according to the ESA. The tail-like structure is made up of water ice, and despite its location on Arsia Mons, it is not formed by the volcano itself, scientists said, but instead local winds interact with the topography.
And Arsia Mons Allanated Cloud just doesn’t come, stick around for a while, then disintegrate. It is formed and fades during a few hours in each local morning, then returns the following day. This creates strange clouds to study from orbit around the red planet.
But Mars Express is uniquely qualified to do so. It carries a device called Visual monitoring camera, Which can photograph an unusually wide swath of the planet in a single frame. And when the cloud appears in the morning of the spacecraft’s orbit, Arasia goes upstairs to keep Mons in her view.
“The extent of this huge cloud cannot be seen when your camera only has a narrow field of view, or you’re only looking in the afternoon,” said Eleni Revanis, a graduate trainee on the Visual Monitoring Camera team. Statement. “Fortunately for the Mars Express, the highly elliptical orbit of the spacecraft, combined with the wider area of the VMC instrument, allows us to take pictures covering a wide area of the planet in the morning. This means that we Can hold! “
Scientist Last Spot Arasia Mons Tail Clouds In September and October 2018. Time and again now, the day is the shortest of the year in the northern hemisphere of the red planet and the longest of the year in the southern hemisphere. Arcea Mons is in itself located just south of the Martian equator and extends to an elevation of about 12 miles (20%).
Scientists hope that by continuing to study the faint cloud, they can begin to understand how long it has been making its appearance and why it only appears in the morning.
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