Ever wondered what it might be like to skim the surface of Mars? Wonder no more.
Last week, the European Space Agency released a recreation of a flight over the red planet’s surface, based off images taken by the Mars Express High Resolution Camera, taken between December 2008 and January 2014.
"Explore the Atlantis Chaos region of Mars," the ESA said of the video, "a myriad of features that reflect a rich geological history.
"The tour takes in rugged cliffs and impact craters, alongside parts of ancient shallow, eroded basins. See smooth plains scarred with wrinkled ridges, scarps and fracture lines that point to influence from tectonic activity.
The ESA also released a "heatmap" of the region - called Terra Sirenum, colour-coded to show reds and whites as the highest points and blues the lowest depths.
"Marvel at ’chaotic’ terrain - hundreds of small peaks and flat-topped hills that are thought to result from the slow erosion of a once-continuous solid plateau," the agency said.
"This entire region may once have played host to vast volumes of water - look out for the evidence in the form of channels carved into steep-sided walls."
The Mars Express mission is a small spacecraft in orbit around Mars, imaging the surface. It was launched along with Beagle2, a lander, in June 2003, when Earth and Mars were extremely close together, and reached orbit of Mars in December that year.
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