Agents of change on Mars' northern dunes

CO2 ice and wind

C. J. Hansen, S. Diniega, N. Bridges, Shane Byrne, C. Dundas, Alfred S. McEwen, G. Portyankina

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Both wind and seasonal CO2 ice sculpt the dunes of Mars in today's climate. The High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) on the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter has returned extensive temporal coverage of changes on the north polar dunes for nearly four Mars years. The processes driving dune morphology changes such as the formation of new alcoves have been investigated. Considerable interannual variability has been observed. Most changes occur in the period of time when HiRISE cannot image: late summer and fall when light levels are too low to see subtle changes on the dunes and the polar hood obscures the surface, and winter when the cap is in polar night. This is consistent with seasonal control but does not allow us to directly differentiate between eolian processes vs. CO2 ice as the driving agent for alcove formation. Circumstantial evidence and observations of analog processes in the southern mid-latitudes however implicates processes associated with frost emplacement and removal.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)264-274
Number of pages11
JournalIcarus
Volume251
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2015

Fingerprint

dunes
mars
dune
Mars
ice
Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter
frost
eolian process
high resolution
caps
night
winter
climate
summer
emplacement
experiment
analogs
science

Keywords

  • Mars
  • Mars, polar caps
  • Mars, surface

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

Cite this

Hansen, C. J., Diniega, S., Bridges, N., Byrne, S., Dundas, C., McEwen, A. S., & Portyankina, G. (2015). Agents of change on Mars' northern dunes: CO2 ice and wind. Icarus, 251, 264-274. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.icarus.2014.11.015

Agents of change on Mars' northern dunes : CO2 ice and wind. / Hansen, C. J.; Diniega, S.; Bridges, N.; Byrne, Shane; Dundas, C.; McEwen, Alfred S.; Portyankina, G.

In: Icarus, Vol. 251, 01.05.2015, p. 264-274.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Hansen, CJ, Diniega, S, Bridges, N, Byrne, S, Dundas, C, McEwen, AS & Portyankina, G 2015, 'Agents of change on Mars' northern dunes: CO2 ice and wind', Icarus, vol. 251, pp. 264-274. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.icarus.2014.11.015
Hansen, C. J. ; Diniega, S. ; Bridges, N. ; Byrne, Shane ; Dundas, C. ; McEwen, Alfred S. ; Portyankina, G. / Agents of change on Mars' northern dunes : CO2 ice and wind. In: Icarus. 2015 ; Vol. 251. pp. 264-274.
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