Science

NASA view of Mars looks like a ’70s shag carpet – CNET

Mars' South Polar region looks very soft and welcoming.

NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

There's one place on Mars where Tony Manero from Saturday Night Fever would feel right at home.

The High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRise) team posted a Mars terrain image last week and every day since I've gone back to look at it, unable to shake the feeling that it looks like a close-up of shaggy 1970s carpeting.

We're not talking the cheap stuff. This is the kind that has a bit of swirl to it and you could sink your bare feet into while boogieing to Dancing Queen.

There's a bit of mystery as to why this part of Mars looks like it could be found on the floor of the Brady Bunch house.

"This terrain is unusual for the South Polar region of Mars, with a set of curved ridges of unknown origin," writes HiRise principal investigator Alfred McEwen. The HiRise team is based out of the University of Arizona in Tucson and shares images from NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter.

McEwen suggests the small pits visible on the ridges may have been caused by sublimation of ice, which happens when ice turns directly into vapor.

We've seen a lot of wild formations on the surface of Mars, from pebbles that resemble blueberries to spidery landscape features. Now we can add a shag carpet to the mix.

This would be a great time put on some bell bottoms and cue up David Bowie's '70s hit Life on Mars.

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