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The Explanation Behind The Mysterious Spider-Like Formations On The Red Planet

Update Date: Dec 23, 2016 07:05 AM EST

NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory revealed the explanation behind bizarre spider-like cracks on the Martian dune. Planet Mars has lots of diverse collection of landscapes and features. These spider-shaped features were erosion carved in the south polar region of Mars.

The Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) arrived on the red planet's orbit in 2006. The MRO snapped the mysterious spider-like features. Scientists said it was a cumulative growth of channels of the thawing carbon dioxide process.

The spider-like cracks in the sand dunes were huge and have a several channels which were grown from a certain central point. It depicted the body and legs of an earth spider. These spider-shaped features inspired scientists to grasp for some explanations.

The spider-shaped formations were naturally occurring on the Martian surface.  Researchers found that it ranges from ten yards to thousands of yards.  The 150-mile-overhead-strange-shaped formations which cover the south polar region of the red planet were "araneiform" terrain. Planetary scientist Candice Hansen unveiled that araneiform means spider-like.

In the Project Icarus, Ganna Portyankina of the UC Boulder publicized that these araneiform were estimated to have taken more than a thousand Martian years to develop. The red planet's year lasts around 1.9 Earth years. Scientists were constantly checking the year-over-year spider-shaped formations through MRO's High-Resolution Experiment (HiRISE).

In 2007, Hugh Kieffer explained the presence of the dry ice. A dry ice is composed of a solid form of carbon dioxide. Carbon dioxide ice does not melt into a liquid state. Kieffer divulged that this dry ice bypasses the liquid phase and sublimes from a solid to a vapor.

These tarpped gasses generate pressure and formed cracks on the Martian surface. The spring sand which gasses released generally took three Martian years to form. These spider-like features were merely a Mars phenomenon and it was purely a kind of erosion process.

 

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