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Mars Operational Environmental Satellite (MOES): A post-Mars Observer discovery missionMars Operational Environmental Satellite (MOES) is a Discovery concept mission that is designed to observe the global short-term weather phenomena on Mars in a systematic fashion. Even after the Mariner, Viking, and, soon, Mars Observer missions, crucial aspects of the martian atmosphere will remain unobserved systematically. Achieving a better understanding of the cycles of dust, water vapor, and ices on Mars requires detailed information about atmospheric transports of those quantities associated with the weather systems, particularly those arising in mid latitudes during fall and winter. It also requires a quantitive understanding of the processes responsible for the onset and evolution of dust storms on all scales. Whereas on Earth the system of geosynchronous and polar orbiting satellites provides continuous coverage of the weather systems, on Mars the time history of important events such as regional and global dust storms remains unobserved. To understand the transport of tracers in the martian atmosphere and particularly to identify their sources and sinks, it is necessary to have systematic global, synoptic observations that have yet to be attained. Clearly these requirements are not easy to achieve from a single spacecraft in orbit, but if we focus on specific regions of the planet, e.g., polar vs. low and mid latitudes, then it is possible to attain a nearly ideal coverage at a reasonable spatial and temporal resolution with a system of just two satellites. Mars Observer is about to yield good coverage of the polar latitudes, so we focus initially on the region not covered well in terms of diurnal coverage, and in terms of desired observations will provide the initial data for the numerical models of the martian weather and climate that can be verified only with better temporal and spatial data.
Document ID
Acquisition Source
Legacy CDMS
Document Type
Conference Paper
Limaye, Sanjay S.
(Wisconsin Univ. Madison, WI, 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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