Oceans on Mars: An assessment of the observational evidence and possible fate

  title={Oceans on Mars: An assessment of the observational evidence and possible fate},
  author={Michael H. Carr and James W. Head},
  journal={Journal of Geophysical Research},
  • M. Carr, J. Head
  • Published 1 December 2002
  • Geology, Environmental Science
  • Journal of Geophysical Research
the edges of the northern plains and interpreted to be shorelines remaining from these former standing bodies of water. We examine the elevations and geologic relations along these contacts in detail and find little support for their interpretation as shorelines. Some contacts are clearly of volcanic origin, and all have significant variations in elevation. Better support for the former presence of water over large parts of the northern plains is provided by the Vastitas Borealis Formation (VBF… 
Evidence for an ancient martian ocean in the topography of deformed shorelines
It is shown that the long-wavelength topography of the shorelines is consistent with deformation caused bytrue polar wander—a change in the orientation of a planet with respect to its rotation pole—and that the inferred pole path has the geometry expected for a true polar wander event that postdates the formation of the massive Tharsis volcanic rise.
Ancient Floodwaters and Seas on Mars
The role of water in the origin and evolution of landforms on Mars has been a main topic of planetary science research for at least the past 30 years, certainly since Mariner 9 images first showed
Mars northern plains ocean
Abstract Based on our update to the global map of the proposed paleoshorelines from the 1980s using high-quality global image and topography data acquired since the late 1990s, this chapter assesses
Timing of oceans on Mars from shoreline deformation
It is found that the shorelines must have formed before and during the emplacement of Tharsis, instead of afterwards, as previously assumed, and this implies that oceans on Mars formed early, concurrent with the valley networks, and point to a close relationship between the evolution of oceans onMars and the initiation and decline of ThARSis volcanism.
Consequences of Proposed Shoreline Deformation Scenarios for Jezero Crater, Mars
One of the most interesting questions about the climate and hydrology of early Mars is whether oceans existed and, if so, when. Various geologic features have been interpreted as ancient shorelines,
Modeling tsunami propagation and the emplacement of thumbprint terrain in an early Mars ocean
The identification of lobate debris deposits in Arabia Terra, along the proposed paleoshoreline of a former northern ocean, has renewed questions about the existence and stability of ocean‐sized body


Although the origin and composition of many units are obscure or controversial, their interpretations are based on objective descriptions of morphologic characteristics visible on Viking photomosaics
Northern lowlands of Mars: Evidence for widespread volcanic flooding and tectonic deformation in the Hesperian Period
[1] Recent Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter (MOLA) data have provided a new picture of the Martian northern lowland basin topography and surface roughness. In order to assess detailed topographic
Preliminary Mariner 9 Report on the Geology of Mars (A 4. 3)
Sedimentary deposits in the Northern Lowland Plains, Mars
The lowland plains on Mars have surfaces marked by large polygonal fracture patterns. It was recently proposed that the fracture patterns were developed on sedimentary deposits from outflow channels.
Coastal Geomorphology of the Martian northern plains
The paper considers the question of the formation of the outflow channels and valley networks discovered on the Martian northern plains during the Mariner 9 mission. Parker and Saunders (1987) and
The Evolution of the Martian Hydrosphere: Implications for the Fate of a Primordial Ocean and the Current State of the Northern Plains
Abstract In this paper we consider the hydraulic and thermal conditions that gave rise to the elevated source regions of the Late Hesperian outflow channels and explore their implications for the
Chryse Planitia, Mars: Topographic Configuration from MOLA Data and Tests for Hypothesized Lakes and Shorelines
Many of the main outflow channels on Mars debouch into the Chryse Basin and pre-Mars Global Surveyor topographic data show it to be a closed depression almost 2000 km in diameter. New MOLA laser
An overview of geological results from Mariner 9
Mariner 9 acquired pictures of all of Mars at a resolution of 1–3 km; 1–2% of the planet is covered by pictures of 100- to 300-meter resolution. From these data, preliminary 1:5,000,000 scale
Martian permafrost features
The outgassing history of Mars and the prevailing temperature conditions suggest that ground ice may occur to depths of kilometers over large areas of the planet. The presence of permafrost is also