DPS 34th Meeting, October 2002
Session 5. Mars Atmosphere I
Oral, Chair: D.L. Huestis, Monday, October 7, 2002, 11:30am-1:00pm, Room M

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[5.01] Recent Atmospheric Observations of Mars by THEMIS and TES

M.D. Smith (NASA/GSFC), J.L. Bandfield (Ariz. St.), M.I. Richardson (Caltech), P.R. Christensen (Ariz. St.)

With the successful entry of the Mars Odyssey spacecraft into mapping orbit in early 2002 (Ls=330), the Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) joins Mars Global Surveyor TES in monitoring Martian atmospheric temperatures and aerosol opacity using thermal infrared remote sensing from Mars orbit. The THEMIS 15-micron channel (Band 10) can be used in the same way as the Viking IRTM 15-micron channel to give temperatures integrated over a broad portion of the atmosphere centered at about 0.6 mbar. The characteristic signatures of dust and water ice aerosols that are clearly evident in the other THEMIS channels can be used to estimate atmospheric opacity. Here, we give an overview of the latest atmospheric results from both THEMIS and TES during the northern winter and spring seasons (Ls=270-90). Included during this period were the decay of the 2001a planet-encircling dust storm, the growth and establishment of the low-latitude aphelion water-ice cloud belt, and the annual globally-averaged minima of water vapor, dust, and atmospheric temperature.

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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 34, #3< br> © 2002. The American Astronomical Soceity.