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Evidence for recent volcanism on Mars from crater counts

Hartmann, William K. and Malin, Michael and McEwen, Alfred and Carr, Michael and Soderblom, Larry and Thomas, Peter and Danielson, Ed and James, Phillip and Veverka, Joseph (1999) Evidence for recent volcanism on Mars from crater counts. Nature, 397 (6720). pp. 586-589. ISSN 0028-0836. doi:10.1038/17545.

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Impact craters help characterize the age of a planetary surface, because they accumulate with time. They also provide useful constraints on the importance of surface erosion, as such processes will preferentially remove the smaller craters. Earlier studies of martian crater populations revealed that erosion and dust deposition are important processes on Mars. They disagreed, however, on the age of the youngest volcanism. These earlier studies were limited by image resolution to craters larger than a few hundred metres in diameter. Here we report an analysis, using new images obtained by the Mars Global Surveyor spacecraft, of crater populations that extend the size distribution down to about 16 m. Our results indicate a wide range of surface ages, with one region—lava flows within the Arsia Mons caldera—that we estimate to be no older than 40–100 million years. We suggest that volcanism is a continuing process on Mars.

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Soderblom, Larry0000-0002-0917-853X
Additional Information:© 1999 Macmillan Magazines Ltd. Received 16 September; accepted 14 December 1998. We thank G. Herres, G. Esquerdo, and, in Madrid, J. Anguita and M. de las Casas, for assistance with crater counts and data processing. We also thank D. Berman and G. Hartmann for editorial assistance.
Issue or Number:6720
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20150616-094834796
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Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:58279
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:16 Jun 2015 17:11
Last Modified:10 Nov 2021 22:02

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