A mesmerizing “blue” sand dune on Mars has been photographed by NASA. The sand dune actually appears blue in an enhanced-color photo. Such dunes often accumulate in the floors of craters on the Red Planet. This particular dune formed in a region of the Lyot Crater and was captured by NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter.
The sand dune is actually more grayish than blue but it appears as such in an enhanced-color image captured by the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. This visual effect has been achieved by increasing the contrast. This is something that Mars’ researchers regularly do in order to see more details in the images and clearly, this technique works very well.
Just south of this field of classic barchan dunes, there is an additional large dune with a more complex structure. It appears to be made of finer material and/or with a composition different than that of its surrounding.
The image was captured by NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter earlier this year. The Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter Project is managed by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, which is a division of Caltech in Pasadena, California, for NASA’s Science Mission Directorate, Washington. The orbiter most recently spotted NASA’s InSight Lander on the surface of Mars from space.