NASA re-creates huge Mars dust devil in 3-D video
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Posted 28 March 2012 - 11:32 AM
Using satellite photos of a giant twister-like dust devil on Mars, scientists have created a 3-D video model of the column to study weather patterns on the Red Planet.
The video is based on a photo captured Feb. 16 by NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, which has been circling our neighboring planet since March 2006. The image shows a smoky white swirl representing a 100 foot-wide (30 meter) Mars weather phenomenon that kicked up a column of dust half a mile (800 meters) up into the planet's atmosphere.
By studying the shape of the Martian dust devil as well as its shadow, researchers at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena, Calif., which manages the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, determined that the column extends high into Mars' atmosphere.
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