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Neukum Crater in Noachis Terra, Mars: Absolute Model Ages and Stratigraphy

Hiesinger, H. and Bernhardt, H. and Reiss, Dennis and Tirsch, Daniela and Jaumann, Ralf and Hauber, Ernst and Head, J.W. and Michael, G. and Williams, D.A. and Bishop, Janice L. and Poulet, Francois and Muller, Jan-Peter and Gross, C. and Gwinner, Klaus and Adeli, Solmaz and Fanara, Lida (2018) Neukum Crater in Noachis Terra, Mars: Absolute Model Ages and Stratigraphy. 20th EGU General Assembly, EGU2018, 4.-13. Apr. 2018, Wien, Österreich.

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Abstract

We geologically mapped the Neukum crater in Noachis Terra, Mars, using a variety of data sets (e.g., HRSC, CTX, MOC, HiRISE, THEMIS, CRISM, and MOLA), and identified 21 geomorphologic units. Several plains units on the crater floor show distinct morphologies (smooth, rough, hummocky, furrowed), albedo, surface roughness, and thermal inertia, and are large enough to be dated with crater size-frequency distribution (CSFD) measurements. Like other craters in the vicinity, Neukum crater hosts pits on its floor, showing fine-scale layering, likely related to the deposition of a regional unit that filled these craters. The wide distribution of pits indicates that the degradational process that created them must have been active at regional scale. Thus, Neukum crater can serve as a case study for processes that shaped significant portions of Noachis Terra. We used CTX images to perform CSFD measurements of seven mapped geologic units to study their stratigraphy and absolute model ages (AMAs). In some cases it was challenging to obtain robust CSFDs, particularly for the hummocky units, when surface roughness and crater sizes were similar. These crater sizes, however, were not used for the fitting of the production function, and thus, do not affect the derived AMAs. Our CSFD measurements suggest that Neukum crater is at least 3.5-3.7 Ga old, as indicated by our age for unit Nr, which represents the crater rim and the older age of unit Nfh2, which is exposed on the crater floor. Neukum crater might even be older and certainly is a Noachian crater. While the crater itself is old, most of our map units exhibit significantly younger ages, indicating modification of the crater. At least three units show evidence for resurfacing, i.e. units Hfh2, Hfs, and Nhpu2. The youngest AMA of 66 Ma was derived for the floor of the northeastern pit within Neukum crater. This map unit Nhpu2 also exhibits additional AMAs of 450 Ma and 2.2 Ga. Similar ages (within the error bars) to the 450 Ma AMA have been found for units Hfr1 (460 Ma) and Hfs (570 Ma). Within their error bars, units Hfh1 and Hfr2 also show overlapping ages of 340 Ma and 300 Ma, respectively. Taking into account the error bars, the oldest ages of units Nhpu2 (2.2 Ga) and Hfs (1.8 Ga) are also similar to each other. Thus, several geologic units associated with Neukum crater might share similar modification histories, implying that the responsible processes affected large areas within the crater and possibly even outside the crater. In fact, our geologic study indicates that aeolian processes might have substantially modified the crater and its floor until the recent past. Thus, our AMAs are consistent with our morphologic observations of deflation of many of our map units. Evidence for accumulation of material only exists in a few places in form of transverse and longitudinal dunes.

Item URL in elib:https://elib.dlr.de/122665/
Document Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Speech)
Title:Neukum Crater in Noachis Terra, Mars: Absolute Model Ages and Stratigraphy
Authors:
AuthorsInstitution or Email of AuthorsAuthors ORCID iD
Hiesinger, H.Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität MünsterUNSPECIFIED
Bernhardt, H.Institut für Planetologie, Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität, MünsterUNSPECIFIED
Reiss, DennisInstitut für Planetologie, Westfälische Wilhelms‐Universität Münster, Münster, GermanyUNSPECIFIED
Tirsch, Danieladaniela.tirsch (at) dlr.dehttps://orcid.org/0000-0001-5905-5426
Jaumann, Ralfralf.jaumann (at) dlr.dehttps://orcid.org/0000-0002-9759-6597
Hauber, ErnstErnst.Hauber (at) dlr.dehttps://orcid.org/0000-0002-1375-304X
Head, J.W.Department of Geological Sciences, Brown University, Providence, RI, USAUNSPECIFIED
Michael, G.Institute of Geosciences, Freie Universität Berlin, Berlin , GermanyUNSPECIFIED
Williams, D.A.Department of Geology, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ, USAUNSPECIFIED
Bishop, Janice L.Carl Sagan Center, SETI Institute and NASA-Ames Research Center, Mountain View, CAUNSPECIFIED
Poulet, FrancoisInstitut d’Astrophysique Spatiale, CNRS Université Paris Sud, Orsay, FranceUNSPECIFIED
Muller, Jan-PeterMullard Space Science Laboratory, University College London, Holmbury St Mary, Surrey, RH5 6NT, United KingdomUNSPECIFIED
Gross, C.Freie Universität Berlin, Geological Sciences, Planetary Sciences & Remote Sensing, Berlin, GermanyUNSPECIFIED
Gwinner, KlausKlaus.Gwinner (at) dlr.deUNSPECIFIED
Adeli, SolmazSolmaz.Adeli (at) dlr.dehttps://orcid.org/0000-0001-9972-409X
Fanara, LidaLida.Fanara (at) dlr.deUNSPECIFIED
Date:2018
Refereed publication:No
Open Access:Yes
Gold Open Access:No
In SCOPUS:No
In ISI Web of Science:No
Volume:20
Page Range:p. 13328
Series Name:EGU General Assembly Conference Abstracts
Status:Published
Keywords:Mars, impact cratering, age dating, geologic mapping
Event Title:20th EGU General Assembly, EGU2018
Event Location:Wien, Österreich
Event Type:international Conference
Event Dates:4.-13. Apr. 2018
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport
HGF - Program:Space
HGF - Program Themes:Space Science and Exploration
DLR - Research area:Raumfahrt
DLR - Program:R EW - Erforschung des Weltraums
DLR - Research theme (Project):Project MARS-EXPRESS / HRSC
Location: Berlin-Adlershof
Institutes and Institutions:Institute of Planetary Research > Planetary Geology
Institute of Planetary Research > Planetary Geodesy
Deposited By: Tirsch, Daniela
Deposited On:05 Nov 2018 11:18
Last Modified:31 Jul 2019 20:20

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