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Fault geometries and extension in the Valles Marineris, MarsThe central troughs of the Valles Marineris system on Mars are generally regarded to be of tectonic origin because they are linear and bounded by faults. Their radial orientation to the Tharsis rise suggests that at least their incipient formation was influenced by the formation of the rise, but the exact role of Tharsis is not yet well understood. Collapse and erosion may have significantly modified the original tectonic troughs. To better understand the magnitude and mechanism of crustal extension across the Valles Marineris, the attitudes of trough-wall faults that parallel the long axes of the troughs were studied. Our results will help to determine if the extension is related to the Tharsis rise, to a local arch along which the troughs lie, or to other mechanisms. Fault-plane attitudes were obtained by performing a photogrammetric study of fault traces in the walls of Candor and Melas Chasmata. If the exposed wall faults are not major trough-bounding faults, it is assumed that these major faults are buried at the base of the walls and have similar geometries to the exposed faults. Three dimensional coordinates of several points along each fault trace were obtained and three-point solutions to their geometries were constructed. As expected, the results show that the faults dip toward the interior of the troughs, suggesting that they are indeed normal faults associated with trough formation.
Document ID
Acquisition Source
Legacy CDMS
Document Type
Conference Paper
Chadwick, D. J.
(Geological Survey Flagstaff, AZ, United States)
Lucchitta, B. K.
(Geological Survey Flagstaff, AZ, United States)
Date Acquired
September 6, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 1993
Publication Information
Publication: Lunar and Planetary Inst., Twenty-fourth Lunar and Planetary Science Conference. Part 1: A-F
Subject Category
Lunar And Planetary Exploration
Accession Number
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.

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