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ESA releases images revealing Mars' ancient waterways
Mars once had a whole lot of water on its surface.
Mars might be a dusty and dried planet with some icy areas, but this wasn't the case a long time ago. After NASA and ESA carried out some tests, the scientists have understood that the Red Planet once had a lot of water on the surface.
Now, ESA's Mars Express satellite has captured a new set of pictures that show an area of Mars which once was a wet area. The images show a landscape that is leftover from long ago. They are somewhat similar to natural drainage patterns scientists have observed here on Earth.
ESA's image description reads:
"The topography of this region suggests that water flowed downhill from the north (right in the main color, topography and 3D images) to the south (left), carving out valleys up to two kilometers across and 200 meters deep as it did so. We see these valleys as they stand today, having undergone significant and heavy erosion since they were formed. This erosion is visible in the form of broken down, smoothed, fragmented and dissected valley rims, especially in the valleys cutting from east to west."
The water-carved valleys can be clearly seen, but there's no explanation of where the water originated initially. The scientists suggest that it could be the melting glaciers or precipitation, but there's no way to know for sure.