High Ice Purity of Martian Lobate Debris Aprons at the Regional Scale: Evidence From an Orbital Radar Sounding Survey in Deuteronilus and Protonilus Mensae

Eric Ivan Petersen, John W. Holt, Joseph S. Levy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Scopus citations

Abstract

Lobate Debris Aprons (LDA) are martian landforms with a strong morphologic resemblance to rock glaciers and debris-covered glaciers. While the Shallow Radar (SHARAD) sounder has confirmed that a handful of LDA are composed of >80% water ice, viscous flow morphology can also be produced by as little as 30% ice. To distinguish between these endmembers, we conducted a comprehensive regional SHARAD survey of LDA, in Deuteronilus Mensae. We found that the majority of LDA are penetrated by SHARAD and determined that they are composed of a material with 휖∈′ = 3 and tanδ≈0.002 < 0.005. These LDA are thus consistently composed of >80% water ice, which constrains the regional sequestered ice budget to a minimum of 0.9 − 1.0 × 10 5  km 3 or a 62–69-cm Global Equivalent Layer.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)11,595-11,604
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Volume45
Issue number21
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 16 2018

Keywords

  • debris-covered glaciers
  • lobate debris aprons
  • Mars cryosphere
  • orbital radar sounding
  • remote sensing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)

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