Nasa orbiter captures Star Trek Starfleet logo on Mars

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Since 2006, NASA's Mars Reconnoissance Orbiter (MRO) has been exploring Mars from orbit, capturing some of the most detailed - and interesting - images of the surface of the Red Planet with its HiRISE (High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment) camera.

But one recent MRO sighting had some sci-fi fans exclaiming "Beam me up, Scotty!"

"Enterprising viewers will make the discovery that these features look conspicuously like a famous logo", the camera team behind the MRO HiRise image said.

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The image was acquired on April 22, 2019. The MRO captured a series of unusual chevron symbols on a Martian sand dune in the southeast Hellas Planitia region.

On the Red Planet's Hellas Planitia expanse, the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter has spotted a rather conspicuous logo that will have trekkies jumping for joy, while rekindling old rivalries with the Star Wars fandom in the process.

It also seems that these shapes are not something odd on the Red Planet, and they are usually the result of flow which has been happening a lot also in the past. The interplay of dunes, wind, and lava made the particular chevron look so prominent, according to a statement from the University. At some point in Martian history, crescent-shaped dunes were in the area. But it seems there really is a Star Trek insignia on the surface of Mars. But, because they are not dense enough, they are unable to cover the dunes entirely. It started as a crescent-shaped dune that became an island in the sea of lava but the sand eventually blew away in the wind. Their footprints, called "dune casts", were left behind in the lava field.

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