On 20 July 1976 the NASA Orbiter spacecraft descended to a mere 1,000 feet (300 meters) above the nearly airless Martian desert to take unprecedented pictures of the planet, snapping images of an area called Cydonia.
Cydonia is primarily known for a feature contained in those images in frame 35A72, known as the Face. This feature is one mile long (1.6 kilometers) and rises 1,500 feet (457 meters) above the Martian desert. It resembles a humanoid face, sphinx-like in appearance.
Cydonia also contains other interesting features that drew the attention of some researchers and a few scientists. Most of these features are pyramid-like in shape, and two of these -- one deemed the D&M pyramid -- are 5-sided. The features appeared artificial to some and resemble ancient architecture found on Earth.
NASA's position on Cydonia was that the images of the area showed only natural features and tricks of light. Most of the scientific community agreed. In fact once the Face appeared on tabloid covers, paying Cydonia any scientific mind drew ridicule at best.
Nevertheless, Richard Hoagland, Erol Torun and a handful of others quietly labored away over the images in their spare time trying to eliminate the possibility that the features were artificial. Instead, to their own surprise, every avenue of attack was answered with unexpected results that begged more questions than it answered. Mathematical consistencies like the repetition of a 19.5 degree angle permeated the area's geometric configuration along with other synchronous mathematical relationships, not just within Cydonia itself but also in relation to the constellations and even the Gizeh pyramids on Earth.
The scientific community dismissed the continuing research out of hand. Still, while aspects of it were highly speculative a core mathematical consistency was becoming more and more curious.
Hoagland recorded the findings in a book, The Monuments of Mars: A City on the Edge of Forever and founded Enterprise which hosts an "open-source" research project on Cydonia. Here Hoagland and his team post NASA images of the area with their personal research data. Though the tenor of the site is arguably freewheeling, the open nature of Enterprise is founded on the main tenant of science: the ability to challenge another's work in order to disprove it or independently corroborate the findings.
Over the past two decades Hoagland and others have "decoded" what they believe to be a mathematical message of hyperdimensional physics encoded in Cydonia. This proposed new physics predicts higher dimensional energies, control of gravitational forces, and a new free limitless energy source. The wellspring of this "hyperdimensional energy gate" feeds into our 3-D world and is linked to the 19.5 figure, which represents a point of intersection in the geometric shape of a tetrahedron or pyramid, inside a sphere. Superimposed on a planet with one vertex placed at either rotational pole, this corresponds to about 19.5 degrees above or below the equator.
Hoagland points out there is evidence of this 19.5 degree energy wellspring on every planet, from the Great Red Spot of Jupiter, to the storms of Saturn, the Great Dark Spot on Uranus, Olympus Mons on Mars, our own volcanoes of Hawaii, etcetera.
In 2002 another significant chapter unfolded in Cydonia research when Odyssey mapped Mars with the Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS). THEMIS combines visual and infrared imaging systems for a unique look at topography and heat distribution. Enterprise engaged the services of two independent imaging experts, Holger Isenberg and Keith Laney, to study and refine the images working with different filters to reveal any possible additional details in the area. Holger and Laney worked autonomously to see if their eventual results would duplicate one another or not.
What Laney initially found was "noise" in the images in the way of "blockiness" that could not be filtered out, but eventually realized the blockiness was not noise but evidence of what appeared to be an underground city beneath the dust of Cydonia. It is hypothesized the city is buried under a sheet of ice that is in turn covered with a thin layer of dust.
Holger found no such "noise." It was then discovered that their original images differed, although both were downloaded from THEMIS. Holger's image was altered to be inferior. You can see the infrared images of Cydonia, the underlying "city," and read about the saga of the images (and THEMIS replies to Enterprise queries) at Enterprise.
For over a quarter of a century Cydonia has fascinated, intrigued and compelled many. While many anomalous researchers were and are convinced by the 2002 THEMIS image that a city indeed lies beneath the dusty surface, most await NASA to officially investigate the area. Until that time, Cydonia beckons.