Black-and-white image of the Phlegra Montes region

Black-and-white image of the Phlegra Montes region
The nadir channel, the field of view of which is which is directed vertically down onto the Martian surface, enabled the High Resolution Stereo Camera (HRSC) camera system to acquire image data with a resolution of 16 metres per pixel as Mars Express flew over the Phlegra Montes region during orbit 9465. This enables small-scale geological structures to be identified. To improve the depiction, the resolution in the images shown here has been slightly reduced; north is to the right.
The flow patterns in the depressions in this mountainous region, originating from mass transportation of plastically deforming material, are particularly striking. Large volumes of rocky material appear to have moved along the topographical slope, flowing around obstructions such as hills and filling low-lying areas. Such mass transportations are probably the result of 'rock glaciers'– bodies of ice interspersed with boulders and rocky debris that also occur on Earth, primarily in regions of permafrost on high mountain ranges or at polar latitudes. It is conceivable that rock glaciers slowly moving across the surface of the planet created these flow patterns.
Copyright note:
As a joint undertaking by DLR, ESA and FU Berlin, the Mars Express HRSC images are published under a Creative Commons licence since December 2014: ESA/DLR/FU Berlin, CC BY-SA 3.0 IGO. This licence will also apply to all HRSC images released to date.

ESA/DLR/FU Berlin, CC BY-SA 3.0 IGO.