Home >> Trending Topics >> Science and Technology >> There Is A Strange, ‘Plume-Like’ Cloud Hanging Over Mars

There Is A Strange, ‘Plume-Like’ Cloud Hanging Over Mars



by Gavin Hanson

A “curious” plume-shaped cloud that appeared near Mars’s equator is growing and now casts a long trail from an alien volcano, Oct. 10 photographs from the European Space Agency (ESA) show.

(Article Continues Below Advertisement)

Photos from the ESA’s Mars Express Orbiter show a cloud extending from behind a massive Martian volcano named Arsia Mons.

(Article Continues Below Advertisement)

While the cloud, which could be “visible even to telescopes on Earth,” is hanging over the volcano, it is not being ejected from it despite its proximity, according to a Thursday ESA press release.

“In spite of its location, this atmospheric feature is not linked to volcanic activity but is rather a water ice cloud driven by the influence of the volcano’s leeward slope on the air flow — something that scientists call an orographic or lee cloud — and a regular phenomenon in this region,” the ESA’s statement said.

Mars’s cold, thin atmosphere is seasonally obscured by ice clouds, but scientists believe the summer’s major dust storm might have spurred on the creation of this cloud. Abnormal levels of dust in the atmosphere and Arsia Mons’s gigantic, 12-mile high profile worked together to form the abnormal whisp, scientists say.

The massive dust storm knocked NASA’s Opportunity rover offline when it blotted out the sun and prevented the 15-year-old rover’s solar panels from recharging it, according to a NASA blog post. Scientists hoped once the storm cleared, skies would “clear enough for the solar-powered rover to recharge and attempt to ‘phone home.’”

Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact [email protected]

Wake up Right! Subscribe to our Morning Briefing and get the news delivered to your inbox before breakfast!

About DCNF

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Sign up for our Newsletter

* indicates required field

Email Format