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Book Chapter

Time will tell: temporal evolution of Martian gullies and palaeoclimatic implications

By
T. de Haas
T. de Haas
Faculty of Geosciences, Universiteit Utrecht, Heidelberglaan 2, 3584 CS, Utrecht, The Netherlands
Department of Geography, Durham University, South Road, Durham DH1 3LE, UK
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S. J. Conway
S. J. Conway
Laboratoire de Planetologie et Geodynamique, Universite de Nantes, 2 rue de la Houssinière, 44300 Nantes, France
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F. E. G. Butcher
F. E. G. Butcher
School of Physical Sciences, The Open University, Walton Hall, Milton Keynes MK7 6AA, UK
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J. Levy
J. Levy
Jackson School of Geosciences, University of Texas at Austin, 2305 Speedway, Stop C1160, Austin, TX 78712, USA
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P. M. Grindrod
P. M. Grindrod
Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, Birkbeck, University of London, Malet Street, Bloomsbury, London WC1E 7HX, UK
Centre for Planetary Sciences at UCL/Birkbeck, Birkbeck, University of London, Malet Street, Bloomsbury, London WC1E 7HX, UK
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T. A. Goudge
T. A. Goudge
Jackson School of Geosciences, University of Texas at Austin, 2305 Speedway, Stop C1160, Austin, TX 78712, USA
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M. R. Balme
M. R. Balme
School of Physical Sciences, The Open University, Walton Hall, Milton Keynes MK7 6AA, UK
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Published:
January 01, 2019

Abstract

To understand Martian palaeoclimatic conditions and the role of volatiles therein, the spatiotemporal evolution of gullies must be deciphered. While the spatial distribution of gullies has been extensively studied, their temporal evolution is poorly understood. We show that gully size is similar in very young and old craters. Gullies on the walls of very young impact craters (less than a few myr) typically cut into bedrock and are free of latitude-dependent mantle (LDM) and glacial deposits, while such deposits become increasingly evident in older craters. These observations suggest that gullies go through obliquity-driven degradation–accumulation cycles over time, controlled by: (1) LDM emplacement and degradation; and (2) glacial emplacement and removal. In glacially-influenced craters, the distribution of gullies on crater walls coincides with the extent of glacial deposits, which suggests that the melting of snow and ice played a role in the formation of these gullies. Yet, present-day activity is observed in some gullies on formerly glaciated crater walls. Moreover, in very young craters, extensive gullies have formed in the absence of LDM and glacial deposits, showing that gully formation can also be unrelated to these deposits. The Martian climate varied substantially over time, and the gully-forming mechanisms are likely to have varied accordingly.

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Contents

Martian Gullies and their Earth Analogues
CONTAINS OPEN ACCESS

S. J. Conway
S. J. Conway
Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, France
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J. L. Carrivick
J. L. Carrivick
University of Leeds, UK
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P. A. Carling
P. A. Carling
University of Southampton, UK
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T. de Haas
T. de Haas
University of Utrecht, The Netherlands
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T.N. Harrison
T.N. Harrison
Arizona State University, USA
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Geological Society of London
Volume
467
ISBN electronic:
9781786203625
Publication date:
January 01, 2019

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