Sedimentary Geology of Mars

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Sedimentary Geology of Mars

SEPM Special Publication 102

John Grotzinger, Ralph Milliken

Publication date: 2012
Subject: Mars, Sedimentology

Often thought of as a volcanically dominated planet, the last several decades of Mars exploration have revealed with increasing clarity the role of sedimentary processes on the Red Planet.

ISBN 978-1-56576-312-8
eISBN 978-1-56576-313-5

Title information

Often thought of as a volcanically dominated planet, the last several decades of Mars exploration have revealed with increasing clarity the role of sedimentary processes on the Red Planet. Data from recent orbiters have highlighted the role of sedimentary processes throughout the geologic evolution of Mars by providing evidence that such processes are preserved in a rock record that spans a period of over four billion years. Rover observations have provided complementary outcrop-scale evidence for ancient eolian and fluvial transport and deposition, as well as surprisingly Earth-like patterns of diagenesis that involve recrystallization and the formation of concretions. In addition, the detection of clay minerals and sulfate salts on Mars, coupled with large-scale morphologic features indicative of fluvial activity, indicate that water-rock interactions were once common on the martian surface. This is in stark contrast to the dry and cold surface environment that exists today, in which eolian processes appear to be the dominant mode for sediment transport on Mars. These issues and others were discussed at the First International Conference on Mars Sedimentology and Stratigraphy, held in El Paso, Texas in April of 2010. The papers presented in this volume are largely an extension of that workshop and covers topics ranging from laboratory studies of the geochemistry of Martian meteorites, to sediment transport and deposition on Mars, to studies of terrestrial analogs to gain insight into ancient Martian environments. These papers incorporate data from recent orbiter and rover missions and are designed to provide both terrestrial and planetary geologists with an overview of our current knowledge of Mars sedimentology as well as outstanding questions related to sedimentary processes on Mars.

Pages: 253
Publisher: SEPM (Society for Sedimentary Geology)
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John Grotzinger, Ralph Milliken