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Volcanics and Sulfates in Juventae Chasma
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Volcanics and Sulfates in Juventae Chasma

Acquired Date: February 14, 2007
Release Date: February 14, 2014
Latitude: 3.29 S
Longitude: 61.72 W
Keywords: Chaos/Chasmata, Hydrated Mineral, Layered Mineral, Sulfate minerals, Valles Marineris
Parameters: BD1900R/BD1950 (H2O), BD2100_2 (Monohydrated sulfates), SINDEX2 (Hydrated mineral)

Juventae Chamsa is a large canyon located northeast of the Valles Marineris canyon system in the equatorial part of Mars’ western hemisphere. Valles Marineris is about the size of the Mediterranean Sea if it were emptied of water; it would span the length of the United States! Juventae Chasma is about the size as Lake Huron if it were empty – but Lake Huron is not nearly as deep. This mound on the canyon floor is a remnant of sedimentary rocks that were once more extensive, but have now been reduced to eroded remnants. Like sedimentary deposits elsewhere in Valles Marineris, they are rich in sulfate minerals. Monohydrated sulfates (with one water molecule per sulfate molecule) are shown in yellow.



Juventae Chamsa is a large canyon located northeast of the Valles Marineris canyon system in the equatorial part of Mars’ western hemisphere. Valles Marineris is about the size of the Mediterranean Sea if it were emptied of water; it would span the length of the United States! Juventae Chasma is about the size as Lake Huron if it were empty – but Lake Huron is not nearly as deep. This mound on the canyon floor is a remnant of sedimentary rocks that were once more extensive, but have now been reduced to eroded remnants. Like sedimentary deposits elsewhere in Valles Marineris, they are rich in sulfate minerals. Monohydrated sulfates (with one water molecule per sulfate molecule) are shown in yellow.

This large chasm most likely formed initially from tectonic faulting that down dropped large blocks of the crust. In addition withdrawal of subsurface ice or water may have played a role in enlarging the initial depressions. Liquid water discharged from the subsurface created a flood that carved a channel extending northeast toward the lowland Chryse Planitia, called Maja Valles.

Link to further description of the spectral parameters shown in this image can be found here.

Disclaimer: Colors shown here represent indicators of mineralogy and are not what the human eye would see.

Acknowledgements: THEMIS, MOLA, CRISM, Google Earth.

The Compact Reconnaissance Imaging Spectrometer for Mars (CRISM) is one of six science instruments on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. Led by The Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, the CRISM team includes expertise from universities, government agencies and small businesses in the United States and abroad.

CRISM's mission: Find the spectral fingerprints of aqueous and hydrothermal deposits and map the geology, composition and stratigraphy of surface features. The instrument also tracks seasonal variations in dust and ice aerosols in the Martian atmosphere, and water content in surface materials — leading to new understanding of the climate.

Credit: NASA/JPL/JHUAPL

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