NASA Reveals Diversified Polygon Ridges On Mars

Posted: Jan 26 2017, 8:49am CST | by , in News | Latest Science News

 

NASA Reveals Diversified Polygon Ridges on Mars
This view from the HiRISE camera on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter shows part of an area on Mars where narrow rock ridges, some as tall as a 16-story building, intersect at angles forming corners of polygons. Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Univ. of Arizona
 

NASA Reveals Similar-Looking Ridges on Mars That Have Diverse Origins

Recently, NASA released images of unique ridges located on Mars. The ridges have thin walls just like blades and similar to 16 story tall building. NASA scientists explain that the ridges developed due to Lava activity on Mars.

The ridges have polygon shape, and were similar to those found in Medusae Fossae regions that led scientists observe all types of ridges on Mars, stated Laura Kerber of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California, and lead author of the survey. The survey report published in the journal Icarus.

The discovered ridges are also named boxwork, and the raised lines of ridges develop different shapes, like triangle, pentagons, rectangles and polygons. But, the entire network of ridges is not same, as they differ in size and their origins.

Ridges Types

The rover missions on mars detected several small ridges, including polygon ridges like in the Garden City discovered by Curiosity rover. Curiosity also captured mud cracks developed in small boxwork.

Among large ridges, there are rectangles, each rectangle covering about one mile located in Inca City near South Pole of Mars. These ridges developed due to underground activity that caused fractures, later filled by rising lava that became hard and got exposed after years due to erosion.

Kerber said that, polygon ridges developed for several reasons and help scientists understand mars. Some ridges are mineral veins that show existence of water on mars.

Polygonal ridges located in the Nilosyrtis Mensae a region in northern Mars show wet regions in warm climate, like minerals that develop in hot springs, and also clay mineral channels covered by ancient streams. Scientists need a huge sample to prove this hypothesis.

Kerber is looking for help from general public through a project that use images of Mars from the Context Camera (CTX) on Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. Kerber wants volunteers who can explore more polygon ridges.

The citizen-science program, called Planet Four: Ridges, started in January 2017, under Zooniverse, a platform that hosts several projects for certain discoveries in areas like zoology, astronomy, and biology, etc.

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