CO2 frost cap thickness on Mars during northern winter and spring

W. C. Feldman, T. H. Prettyman, William V. Boynton, J. R. Murphy, S. Squyres, S. Karunatillake, S. Maurice, R. L. Tokar, G. W. McKinney, D. K. Hamara, N. Kelly, K. Kerry

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

43 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The thickness of seasonal CO2 frost that covers the north pole of Mars during the winter and spring seasons is studied using gamma ray and neutron data measured using the gamma ray spectrometer suite of instruments aboard Mars Odyssey. The resultant seasonal variation of CO2 ice/frost thickness for latitudes greater than +85° is in close agreement (within 9% at maximum) with those predicted using all three major Mars general circulation models presently in use. These observed CO2 ice results are significantly different from those inferred from the Mars Obiter Laser Altimeter experiment aboard Mars Global Surveyor (MGS). A possible explanation is that the density of the CO2 ice/ frost cap is considerably lower than that inferred from observed variations of the MGS orbit. Other significant results are that the thermal neutron counting rates provide evidence for variations in the abundance of noncondensable components of the polar atmosphere of Mars and that the basement terrain below the seasonal cover of CO2 frost within about 10° of the pole is nearly 100% water ice.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)7-1
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics
Volume108
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 25 2003

Fingerprint

frost
Ice
caps
mars
winter
Mars
ice
Mars Global Surveyor
Poles
Neutrons
Gamma ray spectrometers
poles
Aneroid altimeters
laser altimeters
gamma ray spectrometers
Gamma rays
annual variations
Orbits
thermal neutrons
basements

Keywords

  • Global circulation models
  • Mars
  • Meteorology
  • Polar regions
  • Seasonal CO frost cap

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Atmospheric Science
  • Geochemistry and Petrology
  • Geophysics
  • Oceanography
  • Space and Planetary Science
  • Astronomy and Astrophysics

Cite this

Feldman, W. C., Prettyman, T. H., Boynton, W. V., Murphy, J. R., Squyres, S., Karunatillake, S., ... Kerry, K. (2003). CO2 frost cap thickness on Mars during northern winter and spring. Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics, 108(9), 7-1.

CO2 frost cap thickness on Mars during northern winter and spring. / Feldman, W. C.; Prettyman, T. H.; Boynton, William V.; Murphy, J. R.; Squyres, S.; Karunatillake, S.; Maurice, S.; Tokar, R. L.; McKinney, G. W.; Hamara, D. K.; Kelly, N.; Kerry, K.

In: Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics, Vol. 108, No. 9, 25.09.2003, p. 7-1.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Feldman, WC, Prettyman, TH, Boynton, WV, Murphy, JR, Squyres, S, Karunatillake, S, Maurice, S, Tokar, RL, McKinney, GW, Hamara, DK, Kelly, N & Kerry, K 2003, 'CO2 frost cap thickness on Mars during northern winter and spring', Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics, vol. 108, no. 9, pp. 7-1.
Feldman WC, Prettyman TH, Boynton WV, Murphy JR, Squyres S, Karunatillake S et al. CO2 frost cap thickness on Mars during northern winter and spring. Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics. 2003 Sep 25;108(9):7-1.
Feldman, W. C. ; Prettyman, T. H. ; Boynton, William V. ; Murphy, J. R. ; Squyres, S. ; Karunatillake, S. ; Maurice, S. ; Tokar, R. L. ; McKinney, G. W. ; Hamara, D. K. ; Kelly, N. ; Kerry, K. / CO2 frost cap thickness on Mars during northern winter and spring. In: Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics. 2003 ; Vol. 108, No. 9. pp. 7-1.
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