NASA has photographed the stunning view of a recent meteorite impact on Mars which caused an avalanche of Martian dust. NASA officials explained that the meteorite hit Mars somewhen within the last 10 years, but most probably the event took place more recently. The meteorite impact left a crater of Mars’ surface and caused a dust avalanche visible by the long black line in the image shared by NASA.
“The crater itself is only 5 meters across, but the streak it started is 1 kilometer long! Slope streaks are created when dry dust avalanches leave behind dark swaths on dusty Martian hills. The faded scar of an old avalanche is also visible to the side of the new dark streak,” said NASA.
The image has been captured recently by the NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO).
A recent meteorite impact on Mars caused an avalanche of Martian dust
Despite the small size of the crater the meteorite generated, it unsettled the slope where it hit Mars and caused an avalanche of Martian dust, rocks, and sand, and dirt, which is visible in the image NASA shared (see it at the beginning of the article) by the long black line, technically known as a slope streak.
Besides, as reported by NASA, the traces of a similar but older dust avalanche can be noticed near the impact zone. Slope streak sightings are not unusual on Mars’ surface, and the science community believes that all these dark lines are caused by Martian dust avalanches.
The image showing the impact zone was taken by NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) with its HiRISE (High-Resolution Imaging Science Experiment), developed by Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp., based in Boulder, Colorado, and operated by the University of Arizona.
The recent image depicting the meteorite impact on Mars that caused an avalanche of Martian dust is just the latest of a series of spectacular photos the MRO probe had taken since early-2006 when it settled in the orbit of the Red Planet.