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Identifying and Interpreting Stratification in Sedimentary Rocks on Mars: Insight from Rover and Orbital Observations and Terrestrial Field Analogs

Citation

Edgar, Lauren Ashley (2013) Identifying and Interpreting Stratification in Sedimentary Rocks on Mars: Insight from Rover and Orbital Observations and Terrestrial Field Analogs. Dissertation (Ph.D.), California Institute of Technology. doi:10.7907/RAGV-WT91. https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechTHESIS:06072013-083424637

Abstract

Sedimentary rocks on Mars provide insight into past aqueous and atmospheric processes, climate regimes, and potential habitability. The stratigraphic architecture of sedimentary rocks on Mars is similar to that of Earth, indicating that the processes that govern deposition and erosion on Mars can be reasonably inferred through reference to analogous terrestrial systems. This dissertation aims to understand Martian surface processes through the use of (1) ground-based observations from the Mars Exploration Rovers, (2) orbital data from the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment onboard the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, and (3) the use of terrestrial field analogs to understand bedforms and sediment transport on Mars. Chapters 1 and 2 trace the history of aqueous activity at Meridiani Planum, through the reconstruction of eolian bedforms at Victoria crater, and the identification of a potential mudstone facies at Santa Maria crater. Chapter 3 uses Terrestrial Laser Scanning to study cross-bedding in pyroclastic surge deposits on Earth in order to understand sediment transport in these events and to establish criteria for their identification on Mars. The final chapter analyzes stratal geometries in the Martian North Polar Layered Deposits using tools for sequence stratigraphic analysis, to better constrain past surface processes and past climate conditions on Mars.

Item Type:Thesis (Dissertation (Ph.D.))
Subject Keywords:Mars, Sedimentology, Stratigraphy
Degree Grantor:California Institute of Technology
Division:Geological and Planetary Sciences
Major Option:Geology
Thesis Availability:Public (worldwide access)
Research Advisor(s):
  • Grotzinger, John P.
Thesis Committee:
  • Lamb, Michael P. (chair)
  • Kirschvink, Joseph L.
  • Stock, Joann M.
  • Grotzinger, John P.
Defense Date:29 June 2012
Non-Caltech Author Email:lauren.a.edgar (AT) gmail.com
Record Number:CaltechTHESIS:06072013-083424637
Persistent URL:https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechTHESIS:06072013-083424637
DOI:10.7907/RAGV-WT91
Default Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:7862
Collection:CaltechTHESIS
Deposited By: Lauren Edgar
Deposited On:12 Jun 2013 18:10
Last Modified:04 Oct 2019 00:02

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