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Northern hemisphere dust storms on MarsDust storms in the northern hemisphere of Mars appear to be less common than the more familiar southern hemisphere storms, and essentially, no activity north of about 30 latittude has been documented. The data are, however, subject to an observational bias because Mars is near aphelion during oppositions, which occur during the most likely seasons for dust activity in the north. The amount of dust activity in the northern hemisphere is clearly very relevant to the role of atmospheric transport in the dust cycle. The classic global storms that occur during spring in the southern hemisphere are observed to transport dust from sources in the southern hemisphere to sinks or temporary depositories in the north. The question of whether atmospheric transport can close the dust cycle, i.e., return the dust to the southern hemisphere sources on some timescale, is clearly relevant to the solution of the puzzle of how the dust storm cycle is modulated, i.e., why storms occur in some years but not in others. There are data that suggest that the spring/early summer season in the northern hemisphere of Mars during the year following the major 1977 storms observed by Viking was very dusty. A number of observations of the vicinity of the receding north polar cap showed clear evidence of substantial dust activity in the sub-Arctic region.
Document ID
Acquisition Source
Legacy CDMS
Document Type
Conference Paper
James, P. B.
(Toledo Univ. OH, United States)
Date Acquired
September 6, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 1993
Publication Information
Publication: Lunar and Planetary Inst., Workshop on Atmospheric Transport on Mars
Subject Category
Lunar And Planetary Exploration
Accession Number
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.

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