2008 Annual Science Report

University of California, Berkeley Reporting  |  JUL 2007 – JUN 2008

Characterization of Aqueous Processes on Mars Through Spectral Remote Sensing

Project Summary

We are analyzing spectral data of Mars including i) CRISM images for the presence of phyllosilicates and sulfates and ii) MER Gusev crater Pancam data of the bright salty soils. This also involves characterizing the spectral properties of i) phyllosilicates and sulfates having a variety of mineral structures, and ii) altered volcanic material containing phyllosilicates and sulfates.

Work this year on the bright salty soils found at Paso Robles and other sites in Gusev crater showed that this material is composed of the ferric minerals ferricopiapite, fibroferrite and/or ferristrunzite (Lane et al., 2008, Parente et al., 2008). Pancam multispectral visible/near-infrared (VNIR) images of Mars from Gusev crater are shown in Figures 2 and 3. Analysis of these Pancam data together with the mini-TES and Mössbauer data collected by MER enabled characterization of the minerals in the bright salty soils.

Our work analyzing the clay minerals at Mawrth Vallis, Mars, has shown the presence of a large clay deposit that suggests long-standing water on Mars (Bishop et al., 2008). The stratigraphy of the phyllosilicates indicates a complex and interesting aqueous chemistry.

During this year we also completed a study on alteration near Kilauea, Hawaii, where solfataric alteration of ash deposits is taking place and where orange-colored Fe-Ti-S-Si-bearing coatings are forming near vent sites on lava. We are in the process of preparing a manuscript for publication on this study.

4 Institutions
3 Teams
0 Publications
0 Field Sites
Field Sites

Project Progress

We are analyzing spectral data of Mars including i) CRISM images for the presence of phyllosilicates and sulfates and ii) MER Gusev crater Pancam data of the bright salty soils. This also involves characterizing the spectral properties of i) phyllosilicates and sulfates having a variety of mineral structures, and ii) altered volcanic material containing phyllosilicates and sulfates.

Work this year on the bright salty soils found at Paso Robles and other sites in Gusev crater showed that this material is composed of the ferric minerals ferricopiapite, fibroferrite and/or ferristrunzite (Lane et al., 2008, Parente et al., 2008). Pancam multispectral visible/near-infrared (VNIR) images of Mars from Gusev crater are shown in Figures 2 and 3. Analysis of these Pancam data together with the mini-TES and Mössbauer data collected by MER enabled characterization of the minerals in the bright salty soils.

Our work analyzing the clay minerals at Mawrth Vallis, Mars, has shown the presence of a large clay deposit that suggests long-standing water on Mars (Bishop et al., 2008). The stratigraphy of the phyllosilicates indicates a complex and interesting aqueous chemistry.

During this year we also completed a study on alteration near Kilauea, Hawaii, where solfataric alteration of ash deposits is taking place and where orange-colored Fe-Ti-S-Si-bearing coatings are forming near vent sites on lava. We are in the process of preparing a manuscript for publication on this study.

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  • PROJECT INVESTIGATORS:
    Janice Bishop Janice Bishop
    Co-Investigator
  • RELATED OBJECTIVES:
    Objective 2.1
    Mars exploration