This leech-like sand dune on Mars is mesmerizing

Unique Biodiversity Of Alien-Looking Socotra Island

A large Martian sand dune looks like a leech. But that's not the only important thing about the image.

The photo taken by NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter also shows heavily fractured ground beneath the sand dune and between those surrounding it.

The fractured surface could be shattered bedrock that's wind-and-erosion resistant—evidence of years and years of stress or changes in temperature.

Or it could be a layer of sediment once covered by liquid that dried up, causing multiple fissures to be created in the process; something like a giant mud pie left out to bake in the sun.

Beyond the leech-alluding headlines, NASA stresses there's learning potential from both the slug-like sand dune and the surface below.

More from
Katie Holmes derails a photoshoot, hits Penn Station in heels and a ballgown
How much does a bad college football season cost universities?
4 trending stories you may have missed this week
Read Full Story

Sign up for Breaking News by AOL to get the latest breaking news alerts and updates delivered straight to your inbox.

Subscribe to our other newsletters

Emails may offer personalized content or ads. Learn more. You may unsubscribe any time.