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MGS MOC Release No. MOC2-414, 7 July 2003 This is the dusty time of year for Mars. The Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) team has been anticipating for months that late June through July 2003 will be a time of large dust storms and considerable haze. As June turned to July, several large dust storms began popping up. Two examples are shown here in this mosaic of MOC daily global images from June 29, 2003. Near the center of this picture is a large dust storm engulfing southern Isidis Planitia. Toward the upper right (northeast) of the Isidis storm is another event in northern Elysium Planitia. This view of a portion of Mars is illuminated by sunlight from the left. This is a simple cylindrical map projection, north is up. The large dark feature just left of center is Syrtis Major; the bright oval toward the bottom left is the giant Hellas impact basin, which is more than 2,000 km (more than 1200 miles) across. The white area at the bottom of the picture is the south polar seasonal frost cap, made up mostly of carbon dioxide. The wispy features at the top of the image are clouds over the martian northern plains.
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