It’s called HiRISE, or High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment, and it’s the camera installed on the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, a NASA satellite orbiting Mars.
Recently, this probe approached Danielson Crater, north of the planet’s equator, and flew over an area very exciting for space geologists due to the stratigraphic sediments lining the crater.
“The rocks formed millions or billions of years ago when loose sediments were deposited in the crater, one layer at a time, and later held in place,” explained the NASA blog.
“Periodic variations in the properties of the sediments have made some layers more resistant to erosion than others. After eons, these hardier layers protrude outward like steps of a ladder. Through these steps, the wind has scattered the sand (usually appearing darker and less red, i.e. ‘bluer’) in contrasting colours), giving rise to zebra striped motifs.
Stratified sediments can be found all over Mars, but Danielson Crater contains some of the most fascinating and best preserved. Thanks to HiRISE images, scientists are studying these very special regions of the planet, trying to find clues about the history of this world.
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