Evolution of Mars’ Northern Polar Seasonal CO2 deposits: variations in surface brightness and bulk density

Journal of Geophysical Research E: Planets
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Abstract

Small scale variations of seasonal ice are explored at different geomorphic units on the Northern Polar Seasonal Cap (NPSC). We use seasonal rock shadow measurements, combined with visible and thermal observations, to calculate density over time. The coupling of volume density and albedo allows us to determine the microphysical state of the seasonal CO2 ice. We find two distinct endmembers across the NPSC: 1) Snow deposits may anneal to form an overlying slab layer that fractures. These low density deposits maintain relatively constant densities over springtime. 2) Porous slab deposits likely anneal rapidly in early spring and fracture in late spring. These high density deposits dramatically increase in density over time. The endmembers appear to be correlated with latitude.

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Evolution of Mars’ Northern Polar Seasonal CO2 deposits: variations in surface brightness and bulk density
Series title Journal of Geophysical Research E: Planets
DOI 10.1002/2014JE004706
Volume 120
Issue 7
Year Published 2015
Language English
Publisher American Geophysical Union
Publisher location Richmond, VA
Contributing office(s) Astrogeology Science Center
Description 15 p.
First page 1252
Last page 1266
Online Only (Y/N) N
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N