The European Space Agency recently released captured images of a frost build-up in Mars. The time lapse video was taken by the agency’s high resolution camera that has been spying the red planet’s north pole. It showed a 73 x 41-kilometer section that was covered with an ice cap.
The frost build-up in Mars was recorded by ESA in November and December of the year 2004. The Mars Express spacecraft’s High-Resolution Stereo Camera took the footage while on its first year of studying the red planet. Taken exactly on Nov. 23, 2004, and during the Mars Express’s 1097th orbit, the initial footage was again recorded on Dec. 30, and during the spacecraft’s 1219th orbit. Both footages were reportedly captured from the same spot.
The images were then interlaced and centered at 79.94ºN / 44.11ºE to give the images smoother appearances. Following this, it was seen that parts of Mars are being covered with water-ice estimated to be as deep as 2 kilometers, notes ESA. This frost build-up in Mars, according to experts, is due to the climate changes on the red planet. It can be recalled that Mars experience seasonal melting of ice mixed with dust occurs.
The frozen water-ice that can be found on Mars is considered by experts as further evidence that the Martian climate is changing. The red planet also has its winter season, and the frost is reportedly covered with a carbon dioxide ice which can go from a few centimeters to up to a meter thick. Meanwhile during the summer or warmer days, the carbon dioxide can escape through the water-ice layers, reports Phys.org.
The Mars Express is currently on a mission to explore the red planet to further understand its features like atmosphere, climate, mineralogy, structure and composition. The spacecraft is already on its 13th year of exploration. ESA's Mars Express is tasked to for capturing images that was just released to the public. The ESA though is not the only nation interested in the investigation of the Martian world which is believed to be a conducive planet to look for possible alien life in the Solar System. Since 2004, the Mars Express had already greatly contributed to science and the images of the frost build-up in Mars.