Journal Article

2003 Mars Report from Cooperative Observation Networks. I. Pre-Opposition

Takashi Nakakushi, Makoto Adachi, Yuichi Iga and Noritaka Tokimasa

in Publications of the Astronomical Society of Japan

Published on behalf of Astronomical Society of Japan

Volume 56, issue 5, pages 845-860
Published in print October 2004 | ISSN: 0004-6264
Published online October 2004 | e-ISSN: 2053-051X | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/pasj/56.5.845
2003 Mars Report from Cooperative Observation Networks. I. Pre-Opposition

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We have two networks for cooperative Mars observations in Japan: Nishi-Harima Astronomical Observatory Mars Cooperative Observation and Association of Lunar and Planetary Observers in Japan. This paper is a summary of 3515 images collected by the two networks during the first half of the last apparition from 2002 October 18 through 2003 August 31, corresponding to the period of [math] ([math] is the areocentric longitude of the Sun). During this period, many interesting phenomena were observed. (1) Two local dust storms appeared about [math] and [math]. (2) Hellas was obscured just before the occurrence of the first dust storm. This may be relevant to the dust storm. (3) Blue clearings were observed. The phenomena in this apparition may be attributed to the optical properties of the ground for the scattering of light. (4) Dark markings in the south polar cap (SPC) developed as the SPC receded in mid-spring of the southern hemisphere. Also, some bright spots appeared on the SPC. (5) The south polar hood receded polewards and SPC began to be observed at about [math] (mid-May). (6) The north polar hood was not detected until [math] in this apparition. (7) The low-latitude cloud belt had been observed until mid-May. In the dissipation phase, a less cloud area appeared in longitudes of 170[math]-200[math] W.

Keywords: astronomical databases: miscellaneous; methods: observational; planets and satellites: individual (Mars); sociology of astronomy; techniques: image processing

Journal Article.  8535 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics ; Astronomical Instrumentation, Methods, and Techniques ; Planetary Systems

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