A total of 3140 individual particles were examined in 31 soils along Spirit's traverse. Their size, shape, and texture were quantified and classified. They represent a unique record of 3 years of sedimentologic exploration from landing to sol 1085 covering the Plains Unit to Winter Haven where Spirit spent the Martian winter of 2006. Samples in the Plains Unit and Columbia Hills appear as reflecting contrasting textural domains. One is heterogeneous, with a continuum of angular-to-round particles of fine sand to pebble sizes that are generally dust covered and locally cemented in place. The second shows the effect of a dominant and ongoing dynamic aeolian process that redistributes a uniform population of medium-size sand. The texture of particles observed in the samples at Gusev Crater results from volcanic, aeolian, impact, and water-related processes. Copyright 2008 by the American Geophysical Union.
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Soil sedimentology at Gusev Crater from Columbia Memorial Station to Winter Haven