Exposed subsurface ice sheets in the Martian mid-latitudes

Science
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Abstract

Thick deposits cover broad regions of the Martian mid-latitudes with a smooth mantle; erosion in these regions creates scarps that expose the internal structure of the mantle.We investigated eight of these locations and found that they expose deposits of water ice that can be >100 meters thick, extending downward from depths as shallow as 1 to 2 meters below the surface.The scarps are actively retreating because of sublimation of the exposed water ice.The ice deposits likely originated as snowfall during Mars’ high-obliquity periods and have now compacted into massive, fractured, and layered ice.We expect the vertical structure of Martian ice-rich deposits to preserve a record of ice deposition and past climate.

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Exposed subsurface ice sheets in the Martian mid-latitudes
Series title Science
DOI 10.1126/science.aao1619
Volume 359
Issue 6372
Year Published 2018
Language English
Publisher AAAS
Contributing office(s) Astrogeology Science Center
Description 3 p.
First page 199
Last page 201