See A Glorious New Image Of Mars' South Pole

Space is beautiful

Last night, Elon Musk suggested sending a nuclear bomb to Mars to terraform the planet. One of the potential targets is the south pole of Mars. But that's clearly ridiculous. Look at how gorgeous that area is. It's planetary park worthy. Who would ever want to destroy this?

This picture was taken by the European Space Agency's Mars Express as it flew above the Martian Surface, at an altitude of over 6,000 miles. It shows a wide swath of the planet, encompassing craters and other notable landforms. The white section is a polar ice cap, formed from frozen water and carbon dioxide. That carbon dioxide is what Musk is hoping would melt and evaporate, eventually making the Martian atmosphere more like our own.

But in some ways Mars is already like Earth. At the south pole, scientists have observed snow. Sure, it's snowing dry ice, not frozen water, but a white Christmas on the red planet is possible, even without a nuclear winter.

Mars South Pole
Mars South Pole
ESA/DLR/FU Berlin, CC BY-SA 3.0 IGO