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Dec7-11, 02:04 PM
micromass's Avatar
P: 18,346
Your article already explains it:

The answer, according to Nathan Rich, lead ground system engineer at the United States Naval Research Laboratory in Washington, DC, is in the way the images are post-processed.

Talking to Life's Little Mysteries' Natalie Wolchover, Rich said that these are "artifacts in the background where the planet was on the previous day" which then show up as residual pixels in the processed image:

The pixels which form the two parallel lines are where the circle from the planet and the bleeding pixels (cross-like features) overlap as it progresses across the field.