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Sufates and iron oxides in Ophir Chasma, Mars, based on OMEGA and CRISM observations

Wendt, Lorenz and Gross, Christoph and Kneissl, Thomas and Sowe, Mariam and Combe, Jean-Philippe and Le Deit, Laetitia and McGuire, Patrick and Neukum, Gerhard (2011) Sufates and iron oxides in Ophir Chasma, Mars, based on OMEGA and CRISM observations. Icarus: International Journal of Solar System Studies, 213 (1), pp. 86-103. Elsevier. doi: 10.1016/j.icarus.2011.02.013.

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We investigate the sulfate and iron oxide deposits in Ophir Chasma, Mars, based on short-wave infrared data from the Compact Reconnaissance Imaging Spectrometer for Mars – CRISM and from the Observatoire pour la Minéralogie, l’Eau, les Glaces et l’Activité – OMEGA. Sulfates are detected mainly in two locations. In the valley between Ophir Mensa and the southern wall of Ophir Chasma, kieserite is found both within the slope of Ophir Mensa, and superposed on the basaltic wall of the chasm. Here, kieserite is unconformably overlain by polyhydrated sulfate deposits and iron oxides. Locally, jarosite and unidentified phases with absorptions at 2.21 lm or 2.23 lm are detected, which could be mixtures of jarosite and amorphous silica or other poorly crystalline phases. The second large sulfate-rich outcrop is found on the floor of the central valley. Although the same minerals are found here, polyhydrated sulfates, kieserite, iron oxides, and locally a possibly jarosite-bearing phase, this deposit is very distinct. It is not layered, almost horizontal, and located at a much lower elevation of below 4250 m. Kieserite superposes polyhydrated sulfate-rich deposits, and iron oxides form lags. The facies of sulfate formation remains unclear, and could be different for the two locations. A formation in a lake, playa or under a glacier is consistent with the mineralogy of the central valley and its flat, low-lying topography. This is not conceivable for the kieserite deposits observed south of Ophir Mensa. These deposits are observed over several thousands of meters of elevation, which would require a standing body of water several thousands of meters deep. This would have lead to much more pervasive sulfate deposits than observed. These deposits are therefore more consistent with evaporation of groundwater infiltrating into previously sulfate-free light-toned deposits. The overlying polyhydrated sulfates and other mineral phases are observed in outcrops on ridges along the slopes of the southern chasm wall, which are too exposed to be reached by groundwater. Here, a water supply from the atmosphere by rain, snow, fog or frost is more conceivable.

Item URL in elib:https://elib.dlr.de/73124/
Document Type:Article
Title:Sufates and iron oxides in Ophir Chasma, Mars, based on OMEGA and CRISM observations
AuthorsInstitution or Email of AuthorsAuthor's ORCID iD
Wendt, LorenzFreie Universitaet BerlinUNSPECIFIED
Gross, ChristophFreie Universitaet BerlinUNSPECIFIED
Kneissl, ThomasFreie Universitaet BerlinUNSPECIFIED
Sowe, MariamFreie Universitaet BerlinUNSPECIFIED
Combe, Jean-PhilippeBear Fight InstituteUNSPECIFIED
Le Deit, Laetitialaetitia.ledeit (at) dlr.deUNSPECIFIED
McGuire, PatrickFreie Universitaet BerlinUNSPECIFIED
Neukum, GerhardFreie Universitaet BerlinUNSPECIFIED
Journal or Publication Title:Icarus: International Journal of Solar System Studies
Refereed publication:Yes
Open Access:No
Gold Open Access:No
In ISI Web of Science:Yes
DOI :10.1016/j.icarus.2011.02.013
Page Range:pp. 86-103
Keywords:Mars, Surface; Spectroscopy; Mineralogy
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport
HGF - Program:Space
HGF - Program Themes:Space Exploration
DLR - Research area:Raumfahrt
DLR - Program:R EW - Space Exploration
DLR - Research theme (Project):R - Projekt MARS-EXPRESS / HRSC (old)
Location: Berlin-Adlershof
Institutes and Institutions:Institute of Planetary Research > Planetary Geology
Deposited By: Le Deit, Laetitia
Deposited On:09 Jan 2012 14:56
Last Modified:10 Jan 2019 15:47

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