Layers in a Scarp on Olympus Mons
NASA/JPL/University of Arizona
Layers in a Scarp on Olympus Mons
PSP_001432_2015  Science Theme: Volcanic Processes
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This observation shows a small portion of the scarp (cliff) that surrounds the largest volcano in the solar system, Olympus Mons.

The scarp is of unknown origin. It may have formed from faulting or other tectonic processes resulting from the heavy loading of the Martian crust in this location. The bottom of the image shows the cratered flanks of Olympus Mons.

Olympus Mons is a large shield volcano, like the Hawaiian volcanoes on Earth. Shield volcanoes have very shallow slopes and gentle eruptions. The Hawaiian volcanoes form when a plate of crust moves over a hot spot. The hot spot produces magma that gradually forms the volcanoes. Since Earth has plate tectonics, the crustal plate moves over the hot spot producing a chain of volcanoes.

Mars does not have plate tectonics, which causes the magma to build a volcano in one location making Olympus Mons so large.

Written by: Kelly Kolb   (10 February 2010)

This is a stereo pair with PSP_001630_2015.

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Acquisition date
16 November 2006

Local Mars time:
15:28

Latitude (centered)
21.553°

Longitude (East)
222.349°

Range to target site
274.1 km (171.3 miles)

Original image scale range
27.4 cm/pixel (with 1 x 1 binning) so objects ~82 cm across are resolved

Map projected scale
25 cm/pixel and North is up

Map projection
Equirectangular

Emission angle:
6.3°

Phase angle:
43.1°

Solar incidence angle
49°, with the Sun about 41° above the horizon

Solar longitude
136.0°, Northern Summer

North azimuth:
97°

Sub-solar azimuth:
10.6°
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All of the images produced by HiRISE and accessible on this site are within the public domain: there are no restrictions on their usage by anyone in the public, including news or science organizations. We do ask for a credit line where possible:
NASA/JPL/University of Arizona



Postscript
For information about NASA and agency programs on the Web, visit: http://www.nasa.gov. NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, Calif., manages the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington. Lockheed Martin Space Systems is the prime contractor for the project and built the spacecraft. The HiRISE camera was built by Ball Aerospace and Technology Corporation and is operated by the University of Arizona. The image data were processed using the U.S. Geological Survey’s ISIS3 software.