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Two Years at Meridiani Planum: Results from the Opportunity Rover

Squyres, S. W. and Knoll, A. H. and Arvidson, R. E. and Clark, B. C. and Grotzinger, J. P. and Jolliff, B. L. and McLennan, S. M. and Tosca, N. and Bell, J. F., III and Calvin, W. M. and Farrand, W. H. and Glotch, T. D. and Golombek, M. P. and Herkenhoff, K. E. and Johnson, J. R. and Klingelhöfer, G. and McSween, H. Y. and Yen, A. S. (2006) Two Years at Meridiani Planum: Results from the Opportunity Rover. Science, 313 (5792). pp. 1403-1407. ISSN 0036-8075.

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The Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity has spent more than 2 years exploring Meridiani Planum, traveling ∼8 kilometers and detecting features that reveal ancient environmental conditions. These include well-developed festoon (trough) cross-lamination formed in flowing liquid water, strata with smaller and more abundant hematite-rich concretions than those seen previously, possible relict “hopper crystals” that might reflect the formation of halite, thick weathering rinds on rock surfaces, resistant fracture fills, and networks of polygonal fractures likely caused by dehydration of sulfate salts. Chemical variations with depth show that the siliciclastic fraction of outcrop rock has undergone substantial chemical alteration from a precursor basaltic composition. Observations from microscopic to orbital scales indicate that ancient Meridiani once had abundant acidic groundwater, arid and oxidizing surface conditions, and occasional liquid flow on the surface.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription DOIArticle
Knoll, A. H.0000-0003-1308-8585
Arvidson, R. E.0000-0002-2854-0362
Clark, B. C.0000-0002-5546-8757
Grotzinger, J. P.0000-0001-9324-1257
McLennan, S. M.0000-0003-4259-7178
Bell, J. F., III0000-0002-2006-4074
Golombek, M. P.0000-0002-1928-2293
Herkenhoff, K. E.0000-0002-3153-6663
Johnson, J. R.0000-0002-5586-4901
Additional Information:© 2013 American Association for the Advancement of Science. 5 June 2006; accepted 28 July 2006. This research was carried out for the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, under a contract with NASA.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Issue or Number:5792
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20130418-104807440
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Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:38022
Deposited By: Jason Perez
Deposited On:18 Apr 2013 21:00
Last Modified:09 Mar 2020 13:19

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