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Morphology, stratigraphy, and mineralogical composition of a layered formation covering the plateaus around Valles Marineris, Mars: Implications for its geological history

Le Deit, Laetitia and Bourgeois, Olivier and Mège, Daniel and Le Mouélic, Stephane and Massé, Marion and Jaumann, Ralf and Bibring, Jean-Pierre (2010) Morphology, stratigraphy, and mineralogical composition of a layered formation covering the plateaus around Valles Marineris, Mars: Implications for its geological history. Icarus: International Journal of Solar System Studies, 208, pp. 684-703. Elsevier. DOI: doi:10.1016/j.icarus.2010.03.012

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Abstract

An extensive layered formation covers the high plateaus around Valles Marineris. Mapping based on HiRISE, CTX and HRSC images reveals these layered deposits (LDs) crop out north of Tithonium Chasma, south of Ius Chasma, around West Candor Chasma, and southwest of Juventae Chasma and Ganges Chasma. The estimated area covered by LDs is not, vert, similar42,300 km2. They consist of a series of alternating light and dark beds, a 100 m in total thickness that is covered by a dark unconsolidated mantle possibly resulting from their erosion. Their stratigraphic relationships with the plateaus and the Valles Marineris chasmata indicate that the LDs were deposited during the Early- to Late Hesperian, and possibly later depending on the region, before the end of the backwasting of the walls near Juventae Chasma, and probably before Louros Valles sapping near Ius Chasma. Their large spatial coverage and their location mainly on highly elevated plateaus lead us to conclude that LDs correspond to airfall dust and/or volcanic ash. The surface of LDs is characterized by various morphological features, including lobate ejecta and pedestal craters, polygonal fractures, valleys and sinuous ridges, and a pitted surface, which are all consistent with liquid water and/or water ice filling the pores of LDs. LDs were episodically eroded by fluvial processes and were possibly modified by sublimation processes. Considering that LDs correspond to dust and/or ash possibly mixed with ice particles in the past, LDs may be compared to Dissected Mantle Terrains currently observed in mid- to high latitudes on Mars, which correspond to a mantle of mixed dust and ice that is partially or totally dissected by sublimation. The analysis of CRISM and OMEGA hyperspectral data indicates that the basal layer of LDs near Ganges Chasma exhibits spectra with absorption bands at not, vert, similar1.4 μm, and not, vert, similar1.9 μm and a large deep band between not, vert, similar2.21 and not, vert, similar2.26 μm that are consistent with previous spectral analysis in other regions of LDs. We interpret these spectral characteristics as an enrichment of LDs in opaline silica or by Al-phyllosilicate-rich layers being overlain by hydroxylated ferric sulfate-rich layers. These alteration minerals are consistent with the aqueous alteration of LDs at low temperatures.

Item URL in elib:https://elib.dlr.de/67958/
Document Type:Article
Title:Morphology, stratigraphy, and mineralogical composition of a layered formation covering the plateaus around Valles Marineris, Mars: Implications for its geological history
Authors:
AuthorsInstitution or Email of AuthorsAuthors ORCID iD
Le Deit, Laetitialaetitia.ledeit (at) dlr.deUNSPECIFIED
Bourgeois, OlivierLaboratoire de Planétologie et de Géodynamique de Nantes, CNRS UMR-6112UNSPECIFIED
Mège, DanielLaboratoire de Planétologie et de Géodynamique de Nantes, CNRS UMR-6112UNSPECIFIED
Le Mouélic, StephaneLaboratoire de Planétologie et de Géodynamique de Nantes, CNRS UMR-6112UNSPECIFIED
Massé, MarionLaboratoire de Planétologie et de Géodynamique de Nantes, CNRS UMR-6112UNSPECIFIED
Jaumann, Ralfralf.jaumann (at) dlr.deUNSPECIFIED
Bibring, Jean-PierreInstitut d’Astrophysique Spatiale, Université Paris 11, Orsay Campus, FranceUNSPECIFIED
Date:August 2010
Journal or Publication Title:Icarus: International Journal of Solar System Studies
Refereed publication:Yes
Open Access:No
In DOAJ:No
In SCOPUS:Yes
In ISI Web of Science:Yes
Volume:208
DOI :doi:10.1016/j.icarus.2010.03.012
Page Range:pp. 684-703
Publisher:Elsevier
Status:Published
Keywords:Geological processes; Mars, Surface; Mineralogy
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport (old)
HGF - Program:Space (old)
HGF - Program Themes:W EW - Erforschung des Weltraums
DLR - Research area:Space
DLR - Program:W EW - Erforschung des Weltraums
DLR - Research theme (Project):W - Projekt MARS-EXPRESS / HRSC (old)
Location: Berlin-Adlershof
Institutes and Institutions:Institute of Planetary Research > Planetary Geology
Deposited By: Le Deit, Laetitia
Deposited On:10 Jan 2011 11:40
Last Modified:10 Jan 2019 15:47

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