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Monitoring of Dust Devil Tracks Around the InSight Landing Site, Mars, and Comparison With In Situ Atmospheric Data

Abstract : The NASA InSight mission on Mars is a unique opportunity to study atmospheric processes both from orbit and in situ observations. We use post-landing high-resolution satellite images to monitor dust devil activity during the first 8 months of the mission. We perform mapping and semiautomatic detection of newly formed dust devil tracks and analyze their characteristics (sizes, azimuths, distances, and directions of motion). We find a large number of tracks appearing shortly after landing, followed by a significant decrease of activity during late winter, then a progressive increase during early spring. New tracks are characterized by dark linear, to slightly curvilinear, traces ranging from a few to more than 10 m wide. Tracks are oriented in the ambient wind direction, according to measurements made by InSight's meteorological sensors. The systematic analysis of dust devil tracks is useful to have a better understanding of atmospheric and aeolian activity around InSight.
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Contributor : Sébastien Rodriguez Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Tuesday, May 3, 2022 - 2:08:59 PM
Last modification on : Friday, May 6, 2022 - 3:38:56 AM

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C Perrin, S Rodriguez, A Jacob, A Lucas, A Spiga, et al.. Monitoring of Dust Devil Tracks Around the InSight Landing Site, Mars, and Comparison With In Situ Atmospheric Data. Geophysical Research Letters, American Geophysical Union, 2020, 47 (10), pp.e2020GL087234. ⟨10.1029/2020gl087234⟩. ⟨hal-03657926⟩

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