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.