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Mars Database of Named Features
User Documentation


Help for Program Version 1.0, December, 1998

The Mars Database of Named Features program provides basic information on over 1400 named features on Mars. This database is accessed via a Java applet written using 100% pure Java. For the technically curious, the applet was written using the Java 1.02 event model with the byte code produced using JDK version 1.16. This applet was tested using Netscape Navigator version 4.04.

Please note that when you use this applet, each time that you press a button or double-click on a "Feature Name", the Java applet goes back to the PSF server to retrieve the relevant data. If the data fields are not immediately filled in it is probably due to network congestion (they don't call it the World Wide Wait for nothing). Please be patient.

Please send your comments and feedback on the database to the email address listed at the bottom of this page.

How to use the Mars Database of Named Features Java Applet

To begin, you need to choose how you will retrieve the names of the features in the database. You can not retrieve all the feature names at once. A subset of the names can be retrieved by using one of two methods:

  • Names grouped alphabetically
  • Names grouped by their feature type

Once you have retrieved a subset of "Feature Names" you can retrieve the detailed information about a particular feature by double-clicking on the feature's name. Detailed instructions on a sample session follow.

Example of Retrieving Names Alphabetically

Suppose that you know the name of the feature that you are interested in. For this example, let's use Olympus Mons. To retrieve the database entry for this feature, you would:
  1. Click on the down arrow to the immediate right of the "Alphabetic Selection" box. (The box will initially contain the value "-A-".
  2. The drop down box should now appear expanded revealing the letters of the alphabet. Use the scroll bar to locate the value "-O-".
  3. Use your mouse button to click on the value "-O-".
  4. Using your mouse button, click on the button labeled "Retrieve Alphabetic List".
  5. The white box under the label "Double Click on Site Name to Retrieve Data" should now contain a list of all features in the database whose name starts with the letter "O". Use the scroll bar to locate the entry for "Olympus Mons". Once located, use your mouse button to double-click on the name.
  6. The feature detail fields should now be filled in with data.


Example of Retrieving Names by Feature Type

Suppose that you are interested in the volcanoes of Mars. Note that on Mars, volcanoes are, most often, categorized as either Mons or Patera. For this example, let's use Mons. To retrieve a list of all features of this type you would:
  1. Click on the down arrow to the immediate right of the "Type Selection" box. (The box will initially contain the value "Albedo".
  2. The drop down box should now appear expanded revealing a list of feature types. Use the scroll bar to locate the value "Mons".
  3. Use your mouse button to click on the value "Mons".
  4. Using your mouse button, click on the button labeled "Retrieve Type List".
  5. The white box under the label "Double Click on Site Name to Retrieve Data" should now contain a list of all features in the database of the type "Mons". Use the scroll bar to locate the entry for "Olympus Mons". Once located, use your mouse button to double-click on the name.
  6. The feature detail fields should now be filled in with data.


The Data You Get

After double-clicking on a feature's name, a number of data fields for that feature are filled in. A brief description of the data that is currently available follows.

Feature NameThe name of the feature you selected
Feature TypeThe Aerological feature category to which this name belongs
LocationThe latitude and longitude that represents the center of the feature.
Size (Km)Either the diameter or longest dimension of the feature measured in kilometers. Note that if the data value is "0.0", it means that size information is not available.
QuadrantThe abbreviated map designator or chart identifier. For example, MC-10 refers to Mars Chart-10, also known as the Lunae Palus quadrangle.
Map IDThe USGS serial number for the map containing the best representation of this feature.
Name StatusThe official status of this particular name. Status values are Suggested, Task Group OK which means the name has been approved by the Task Group for Mars Nomenclature, WGPSN OK which means the name has been approved by the Working Group for Planetary System Nomenclature, Exec. Comm. OK which means that the name has been approved by the Executive Committee of the International Astronomical Union, Adopted by IAU which means that the name has been officially adopted by the International Astronomical Union General Assembly, Dropped which means this name is no longer officially used.
Year ApprovedThe year in which the name for this feature was formally approved by the International Astronomical Union.
Name SourceThis is the continent or primary geographic source for the name of the feature.
Ethnic SourceThis is the country or secondary geographic/ethnic source for the name of the feature.
Feature Name DescriptionA brief description of the origin of the name for this feature.
Feature Aerologic DescriptionA brief description of the aerological nature of the feature.
Index of Viking ImagesThis is a list of up to 35 Viking images that have a center latitude-longitude that is within 2.0 degrees of the latitude-longitude listed as being the center of the feature. Note that images are listed from closest match (0.0 degree difference) to farthest match(2.0 degree difference).


Error Messages

If there were any errors in the data retrieval process, a red error message box will appear under the box that contains the feature names. If you get an error message, please retry the operation. If the problem persists, make a note of the error message and send email to the address listed at the bottom of this page.



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