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A. Maturilli, V. Formisano, F. Altieri (Istituto di Fisica dello Spazio Interplanetario - CNR)
We have performed a statistical study of TES data to understand the presence of dust in the Martian atmosphere, both with and without a large dust storm. We defined two parameters: D, the depth of the dust band measured as a percentage of the Planck radiance for the ground temperature (already used to classify IRIS data); and G, as the percentage of the CO2 band depth. These two parameters provide a very useful way to characterize the dust content of the atmosphere of Mars. We studied separately data taken in two different periods: one without a regional dust storm, and one with such a storm. The behavior of D and G shows that the ground temperature controls the Martian atmospheric dust content, probably by means of dust devils, when large dust storms are absent.
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