Polar Storms


It is so unlike you to be so negative, keep smiling brother. Glad you enjoyed the snow storm on Mars.


We didn't. It isn't.


Ok, so you are saying that those are not clouds and that is not snow on the ground. Let me guess, it is dust and rocks.


When I said you sometimes manage to say something of possible interest I was not referring to this thread. Quote from the MARCI site for the week ending 20 Apr from here:
'One dust storm of note occurred mid-week along the north polar cap edge, lifting dust onto the perennial cap'.

Your 'quote' from the HiRISE is incomplete and hence dishonest. The dark streaks are attributed to wind shift in direction in the past.

I second John's post 19.


I mentioned that dust was being lifted by the storms onto the ice pack in this thread.


No dishonesty here. I even said that if not for sub-surface eruptions the ice deposition at the poles would be cut off and it would. The current model is taking a visible beating as we speak. You can not have your cake and eat it to.

Every storm that develops on the ice cap thermal boundary will kick up some dust when the southerly flow develops. This is just a by-product of Martian weather. Lower latitude storms have more dust.

You are living in the past Brian, come out into the light. Phoenix has landed. Another MARCI with a more southern extent.




I believe it was you that mentioned an event in the Dessert Southwest in the USA. You mentioned before a storm that balls of dust would form and hit the ground in advance of the precipitation field. At that time I could not understand this process to be on Mars without liquid water or super cooled water in the Martian atmosphere.

The phoenix Lander has given us a new perspective on Mars ice-dust interaction. The plumes beside volcanoes and mega scale surface eruptions along with a better understanding of current day ice deposition at the poles has made me revisit this possible interaction. The current Mars hydro-cycle seems a lot more complex and dynamic and mixing may indeed produce super-cooled water vapor. Your dust balls may fall from time to time in localized areas even without super-cooled water vapor.


To the rest or non-Geo types

For those following along at home I guess I should discuss the polar thermal boundary. NASA does not put out much in the way of thermal data so we must take what we can get and put the puzzle together. I suspect they have a treasure trove at the office in a big stack right beside the Mo’s and AFM images, LOL.

If you look at the legend on this thermal image we see that the temp goes fro -120C to 0C.
The ice cap shows a rapid temperature drop. This is the thermal boundary. Now the primary storm would form here but cold air advection would develop on the backside of the storm. Wish we could see that. If it did not we would not have secondary development below the boundary lay or occlusions. You got to admit boys this is fun stuff. Side note, Is -120 just a coincidence to the formation or phase change of CO2 at -125? Not a chance brother. Next time water ice starts to melt see how long the ambient air hangs out at 33F

Thermal image.


Storm occlusion
I found this link on the net with occlusion discussed along with good weather info.


Mars storm occlusion image



In the Spirit of ground water eruptions that will be proven as the primary water source on Mars I will take this Opportunity to present more visible data.

This is a Themis image of the most recent water eruptions on Mars. Close to a volcano even, who would have thunk it?


This is an image of low and midlevel clouds. Note to Geo types, were you see white the humidity is 100 per cent. Again close to a volcano, who would have thunk it?


I can go on and on dust guys.


I think even the great Hort is starting to recognize the NASA information embargo. NASA does not like people playing around with their images. They have found the internet has exposed the data to all minds.

I think it is because they will be imploded by woo-woo’s. You know how they are. It takes one to know one.

I think we should stop for a moment and celebrate the great woo-woos in the history of science. Sounds like a knew thread if someone wants to start it. Here we will praise the greatest woo-woo of all time. At least that is what his peers thought.

This would be my 5th post in a row. I do spend a lot of time talking to myself.

Oh, almost forgot. the greatest woo-woo of all time.


Yes I do have a high opinion of myself.


Either two things are happening here. Either you guys are asleep or you are listening to me. Personally I think you are asleep.

Now science is my game and I will quote Henry again. “Temperature, pressure and time. “ That is sweet. Everything we know can be put into that description.

Hort you are indeed a good image man. Without you the average guy like me could not swat the bombardment of true color images from the image guys that flourish on the net.

Don is off to work now. Who knows what he can do with a little knowledge.

Maybe we can learn when the minds come together. We will see.

I will go ahead and post your next response John, Whay, whay, cry, cry.

another 6 in a row post


Now it is 12:30 EDT on the east coast and I have popped the top. Could get ugly from here out.

Do not claim you understand Martian weather when I study the images on a daily bases. Thanks Hort and Henry.

I am lying I popped the top two hours ago.



The man could sing a drunk song.



Now it is past 4:00 pm. I been up since 5 AM. You boys want to talk Mars weather?

Did not think so. If you can not talk, lets listen to more music. I will be here brother.



One last damn song.



More frost sol 93. Interesting for sure. Would love to see the humidity read out from the Canadians. Not a chance brother. The wonderful thing is we do not need them. We can see for ourselves.

Now, lets look at what we have learned so far. The moist layer is getting larger post max heating. This shows that the air has held all the moisture it can hold relative to cold objects that it comes in contact with. On Earth this is the same process that develops icing on the wings of an airplane. This occurs at times that the dew point and ambient air temp are about 5 degrees F apart

Keep in mind we are in the Green Valley and this still could be localized. Fascinating none the less. Moist air wedge? Cool stuff.

Hort we could get rapid sublimation or even melting as the storm track sags south post max heating. This may give us a rare glimpse of cumulo fractus Mars style. If you get a chance to monitor cloud movements off the ice pack that would be a treasure

Image of Frost sol 93


Possible low clouds sol 93



Guys I think we are looking at the first images of Cumulus-Fractus Mars style. Could go with cumulo-stratus phasing to stratus but would need a long loop.

The data says 02:43 local at 83 degrees pointing 234 degrees or SW. Now that’s a lot of moisture, snow can not be far away. Cool, or cold in this case



Here is an animation of changes over a minute. Maybe this storm is why there have been so few images from Phoenix the past few days.

Color me surprised. I just checked the L3 sun picture for sol 89 and compared it to the sol 95 image. Both were 20.4 ms exposures and they basically look the same, so the light levels do not seem to be any lower.

Thanks Hort,

Looks like the elements are moving from the NNE to the SSW. Estimated ceiling between 300 and 1000 ft. Looks like moisture sliding down the valley from the NE.

If you were on the surface it would have been quiet a sight to see the low clouds roll in from the North. Cool stuff, thanks again.


sol 95 montage of clouds:

LB and RB exposures were done simultaneously, so I registered the images and then used the LB ( infrared ) as the "red" channel and the RB ( green ) and the "blue" channel and used the average of the two as the "green" channel. I then white balanced the clouds to, er, white.

I am always looking for interesting ways to combine images -- but is this useful at all?