The morphology of small fresh craters on Mars and the Moon

Ingrid J. Daubar, C. Atwood-Stone, Shane Byrne, Alfred S. McEwen, P. S. Russell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

32 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The depth/diameter ratio for new meter- to decameter-scale Martian craters formed in the last ~20-years averages 0.23, only slightly deeper than that expected for simple primary craters on rocky surfaces. Large variations in depth/diameter (d/D) between impact sites indicate that differences between the sites such as target material properties, impact velocity, angle, and physical state of the bolide(s) are important in determining the depth of small craters in the strength regime. On the Moon, the d/D of random fresh small craters with similar diameters averages only 0.10, indicating that either the majority of them are unrecognized secondaries or some proportion are degraded primaries. Older craters such as these may be shallower due to erosional infilling, which is probably not linear over time but more effective over recently disturbed and steeper surfaces, processes that are not yet acting on the new Martian craters. Brand new meter- to decameter-scale craters such as the Martian ones studied here are statistically easily distinguishable as primaries, but the origins of older craters of the same size, such as the lunar ones in this study, are ambiguous. Key Points Depth/diameter ratio for new, dated, meter-scale craters on Mars averages 0.23Fresh-appearing lunar craters of similar size have d/D ~ 0.10New meter-scale craters are recognizable as primaries from their d/D ratios

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2620-2639
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research: Planets
Volume119
Issue number12
DOIs
StatePublished - 2014

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Moon
moon
craters
mars
crater
Mars
Materials properties
lunar craters
bolide
impact velocity
proportion

Keywords

  • craters
  • depth/diameter
  • Mars
  • Moon

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Oceanography
  • Forestry
  • Ecology
  • Aquatic Science
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Soil Science
  • Geochemistry and Petrology
  • Earth-Surface Processes
  • Atmospheric Science
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Space and Planetary Science
  • Palaeontology

Cite this

The morphology of small fresh craters on Mars and the Moon. / Daubar, Ingrid J.; Atwood-Stone, C.; Byrne, Shane; McEwen, Alfred S.; Russell, P. S.

In: Journal of Geophysical Research: Planets, Vol. 119, No. 12, 2014, p. 2620-2639.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Daubar, Ingrid J. ; Atwood-Stone, C. ; Byrne, Shane ; McEwen, Alfred S. ; Russell, P. S. / The morphology of small fresh craters on Mars and the Moon. In: Journal of Geophysical Research: Planets. 2014 ; Vol. 119, No. 12. pp. 2620-2639.
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