First high-resolution stratigraphic column of the Martian north polar layered deposits

Kathryn E. Fishbaugh, Christine S. Hvidberg, Shane Byrne, Patrick S. Russell, Kenneth E. Herkenhoff, Mai Winstrup, Randolph Kirk

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Abstract

This study achieves the first high-spatial-resolution, layer-scale, measured stratigraphic column of the Martian north polar layered deposits using a 1m-posting DEM. The marker beds found throughout the upper North Polar Layered Deposits range in thickness from 1.6 m-16.0 m +/-1.4 m, and 6 of 13 marker beds are separated by ∼25-35 m. Thin-layer sets have average layer separations of 1.6 m. These layer separations may account for the spectral-power-peaks found in previous brightness-profile analyses. Marker-bed layer thicknesses show a weak trend of decreasing thickness with depth that we interpret to potentially be the result of a decreased accumulation rate in the past, for those layers. However, the stratigraphic column reveals that a simple rhythmic or bundled layer sequence is not immediately apparent throughout the column, implying that the relationship between polar layer formation and cyclic climate forcing is quite complex.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberL07201
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Volume37
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1 2010

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)

Cite this

Fishbaugh, K. E., Hvidberg, C. S., Byrne, S., Russell, P. S., Herkenhoff, K. E., Winstrup, M., & Kirk, R. (2010). First high-resolution stratigraphic column of the Martian north polar layered deposits. Geophysical Research Letters, 37(7), [L07201]. https://doi.org/10.1029/2009GL041642