Images of Mars

As Mars approaches Earth and increases in size, you might reasonably expect surface detail to become ever sharper. However, this may not be the case. The weather we are looking through on Earth and the weather on Mars can effect what we see. Unlike Earth, whose weather is virtually unaffected by its distance to the sun, Mars, with its much more elliptical orbit, receives a tiny extra boost in heat when it is closest to the sun—which it now is. This may trigger Martian dust storms. Such storms form suddenly and can rage for days or weeks rendering Mars a very bland, smooth, featureless peach.

Mars July 9, 2003
Mars, July 09, 2003. Emory Observatory (photo: H. Dale)
Mars July 17, 2003
Mars, July 17, 2003. Emory Observatory (photo: H. Dale)
Mars July 23, 2003
Mars, July 25, 2003. Emory Observatory (photo: H. Dale & C. Donofrio)
Mars Aug. 15, 2003
Mars, Aug. 15, 2003. Emory Observatory (photo: H. Dale, C. Donofrio)
Mars Aug. 26, 2003
Mars, Aug. 26, 2003. Emory Observatory (photo: H. Dale, C. Donofrio, R. Parks)