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NASA releases crazy image of lines carved into Mars’ surface

NASA releases crazy image of lines carved into Mars’ surface

It looks pretty mesmerizing.

Mars might be, on average, 140 million miles away from Earth, but now we're getting a closer look at the Red Planet than ever.

NASA has released some mind-boggling images of Mars' surface, showing the ridged lines that are carved into the planet.

It might look a bit like a black-and-white picture of a beach with lapping waves, but it's actually lines that have been created by the gradual movement of ice.

NASA / JPL-Caltech / University of Arizona

The image was captured on August 18 by the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO), which has been studying Mars since 2006.

"As ice flows downhill, rock and soil are plucked from the surrounding landscape and ferried along the flowing ice surface and within the icy subsurface," NASA explains.

"While this process takes perhaps thousands of years or longer, it creates a network of linear patterns that reveal the history of ice flow."

We're gifted with such amazing detail thanks to the MRO, which has the technology to zoom into the Martian surface - it analyzes minerals there, looks for any water on the planet, as well as monitoring the weather systems there.

The deposits might have formed over in water over long periods of time, NASA suggests, so studying it is crucial if we want to find out more about any ancient seas or flowing water that once existed on Mars.

Derek Berwin / Getty

Today, the Martian atmosphere is too thin for liquid water to exist for very long on the surface, NASA says - but water is found. It's just in the form of ice just under the surface in the polar regions, as well as in some salty water which seasonally flows in some places.

Earth might have Mars beat when it comes to water, but did you know the Red Planet takes home the crown for the largest volcano in the Solar System?

It's appropriately known as Olympus Mons - named after Mount Olympus, the tallest mountain in Greece. According to NASA, it's three times taller than Mount Everest, and its base is the size of the state of New Mexico.

If that hasn't given you your fill of Martian content for the day, check out this 'otherworldly' wreckage a helicopter discovered on the planet's surface.

Featured Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UArizona