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MOLA

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ODE: Mars

 

Mission: MGS

 

PDS Geosciences Node: PDS Source Information

 

The Mars Global Surveyor’s Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter (MOLA) instrument – The principal components of MOLA are a diode-pumped, Nd:YAG laser  transmitter that emits 1.064 micrometer wavelength laser pulses, a  0.5 m diameter telescope, a silicon avalanche photodiode detector,  and a time interval unit with 10 nsec resolution.  Additional delay fibers increase the effective resolution to 2.5 ns. When in the Mapping Phase of the mission, MOLA provided measurements of the topography of Mars within approximately 160 m footprints and a center-to-center along-track footprint spacing of 300 m along the MGS nadir ground-track.  Range measurements, with an effective resolution of 37 cm, were converted to profiles of planetary radius and topographic height after correction for orbit and pointing errors.  Radial accuracy of individual profiles was approximately 1 m RMS, as determined by altimetric crossovers, and shot locations are determined to within 100 m in the along-track and across-track directions.  MOLA profiles have been assembled into global grids referenced to Mars' center-of-mass, with resolutions of up to 1/128 degree per pixel, although at this density some interpolation is required across-track.  Other standard data products include near-global grids of footprint-scale roughness and 1.064 micrometer surface reflectivity.  The background solar illumination noise level provides seasonal maps of narrow-band Lambert albedo.

 

The MOLA standard science data products are the Aggregated Experiment Data Record (AEDR) – all MOLA raw data aggregated by orbit; Precision Experiment Data Record (PEDR) – MOLA science data processed into profiles with precision orbit locations added;  Precision Radiometry Data Record (PRDR); and the Experiment Gridded Data Record (MEGDR) – MOLA gridded data in various densities.

 

MOLA  Products:

Type

Description

Data Set

PEDR

Precision Experiment Data Record - Along track, time series collection of MOLA instrument science measurements

More information can be found in:

MGS-M-MOLA-3-PEDR-L1A-V1.0

PRDR

Precision Radiometry Data Record

More information can be found in:

MGS-M-MOLA-3-PRDR-L1A-V1.0

SHADR

Spherical Harmonic Aggregated Data Record

More information can be found in:

MGS-M-MOLA-5-SHADR-V1.0

MEGDR

Mission Experiment Gridded Data Record

More information can be found in:

MGS-M-MOLA-5-MEGDR-L3-V1.0

 

 

In addition to access to the MOLA archive, ODE offers both individual derived products and the MOLA PEDR Query tool found under the Tab tools.  More information about the MOLA PEDR Query tool can be found here.