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Chemical variability in mineralized veins observed by ChemCam on the lower slopes of Mount Sharp in Gale crater, Mars

L’Haridon, J. and Mangold, N. and Meslin, P.-Y. and Johnson, J. R. and Rapin, W. and Forni, O. and Cousin, A. and Payré, V. and Dehouck, E. and Nachon, M. and Le Deit, L. and Gasnault, O. and Maurice, S. and Wiens, R. C. (2018) Chemical variability in mineralized veins observed by ChemCam on the lower slopes of Mount Sharp in Gale crater, Mars. Icarus, 311 . pp. 69-86. ISSN 0019-1035. doi:10.1016/j.icarus.2018.01.028.

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ChemCam has observed a wide range of diagenetic features along the Curiosity rover traverse including pervasive Ca-sulfate veins. Observations by multiple instruments on Curiosity indicate that these veins are hydrated, formed during diagenetic fluid event(s). In this study, we delve into the chemical variability in these Ca-sulfate bearing veins and have identified two subsets in the Murray formation with enrichments in Fe and Fe + Mg. These chemical trends do not reflect a sampling mixture with the surrounding host rock but likely indicates the presence of authigenic phases formed during the emplacement of these veins. Based on passive reflectance spectral analysis and correlation with other elements, Fe^(3+) oxides and/or sulfates are proposed to account for the Fe-rich observations in the vicinity of the Naukluft Plateau whereas the Fe + Mg trend is also observed in adjacent dark-toned features with elevated Mn and P near the Old Soaker outcrop. The specific localization of these observations in the Gale stratigraphy implies changing pH and redox conditions in the groundwater at the time of formation of these veins, from oxidizing and likely more acidic near the Naukluft Plateau to more reducing conditions in the upper part of the Murray formation.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
Mangold, N.0000-0002-0022-0631
Meslin, P.-Y.0000-0002-0703-3951
Johnson, J. R.0000-0002-5586-4901
Rapin, W.0000-0003-4660-8006
Forni, O.0000-0001-6772-9689
Cousin, A.0000-0001-7823-7794
Payré, V.0000-0002-7052-0795
Dehouck, E.0000-0002-1368-4494
Nachon, M.0000-0003-0417-7076
Le Deit, L.0000-0003-1361-5170
Gasnault, O.0000-0002-6979-9012
Wiens, R. C.0000-0002-3409-7344
Additional Information:© 2018 Elsevier Inc. Received 17 November 2017, Revised 15 January 2018, Accepted 23 January 2018, Available online 17 March 2018. Data used in this study are provided by the ChemCam instrument and MSL mission and are available at the NASA Planetary Data System ( This work is supported in the US by NASA’s Mars Exploration Program and in France by the Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales. The authors thank Yuichiro Cho and one anonymous reviewer for their helpful comments.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Centre National d'Études Spatiales (CNES)UNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:Mars; Gale crater; Diagenesis; Calcium sulfate; ChemCam
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20180626-104532480
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:J. L'Haridon, N. Mangold, P.-Y. Meslin, J.R. Johnson, W. Rapin, O. Forni, A. Cousin, V. Payré, E. Dehouck, M. Nachon, L. Le Deit, O. Gasnault, S. Maurice, R.C. Wiens, Chemical variability in mineralized veins observed by ChemCam on the lower slopes of Mount Sharp in Gale crater, Mars, Icarus, Volume 311, 2018, Pages 69-86, ISSN 0019-1035, (
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:87345
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:26 Jun 2018 18:30
Last Modified:15 Nov 2021 20:47

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