Possible Cinder Cone on the Southern Flank of Pavonis Mons
NASA/JPL/University of Arizona
Possible Cinder Cone on the Southern Flank of Pavonis Mons
PSP_002671_1790  Science Theme: Volcanic Processes
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This image is centered on a small cone on the side of one of Mars' giant shield volcanoes. The cone shows some layers of hard rock but most of it is made of relatively soft material. This appears to be an example of a "cinder" cone composed of pieces of lava thrown into the air during a small volcanic eruption.

Typically, such eruptions produce fountains of molten lava. Most of the lava would have cooled in this fountain, producing a loose pile of lava rocks. However, it appears that some pulses of the eruption allowed the lava to land without cooling much. These pieces were hot enough to weld together to make the hard layers we see today. The cone is 700 x 1100 meters (2300 x 3600 feet) in size, similar to many cinder cones on Earth.

In other parts of the image, we see channels carved by lava. It is sometimes difficult to tell if a channel was formed by flowing water or lava; in this case, it is possible to see that lava flows feed out of these channels.
Written by: Laszlo P. Kestay   (6 October 2010)

This is a stereo pair with ESP_011413_1790.

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Acquisition date
20 February 2007

Local Mars time:
15:43

Latitude (centered)
-1.108°

Longitude (East)
246.588°

Range to target site
254.5 km (159.1 miles)

Original image scale range
50.9 cm/pixel (with 2 x 2 binning) so objects ~153 cm across are resolved

Map projected scale
50 cm/pixel and North is up

Map projection
Equirectangular

Emission angle:
2.5°

Phase angle:
53.3°

Solar incidence angle
56°, with the Sun about 34° above the horizon

Solar longitude
187.3°, Northern Autumn

North azimuth:
97°

Sub-solar azimuth:
3.2°
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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.