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Possible flexural signatures around Olympus and Ascraeus Montes, MarsThe effective elastic thickness (h) of the lithosphere provides a measure of the thermal and mechanical state of a planet's shallow interior. An estimate of h in the vicinity of a feature that constitutes a load on a planetary surface can be determined from the flexural response of the lithosphere to the load. This approach has been applied to Mars by calculating radial stresses associated with lithospheric flexure associated with surface loads, and comparing the results to the positions of circumferential graben surrounding the major Martian shield volcanoes and mascon basins. However, many prominent surface loads on Mars, most notably the Olympus Mons volcano, do not exhibit flexural graben. In these instances application of the above method can provide only a lower limit of effective elastic thickness. An alternative method of determining h is to calculate the vertical displacements associated with the flexural loading and to compare the amplitude and shape of the flexural profile to observed topography. This method has not been applied to flexural problems on Mars because of the poor resolution of Martian topographic data. However, previous analyses have shown that the lithosphere around major volcanic shields should exhibit vertical deflections of order 1 km over horizontal baselines of order 100 km. We were thus motivated to search for the presence of flexural troughs in the existing Mars topography data.
Document ID
19940016438
Document Type
Conference Paper
Authors
Zuber, M. T. (Johns Hopkins Univ. Baltimore, MD., United States)
Bills, B. G. (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Greenbelt, MD, United States)
Frey, H. V. (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Greenbelt, MD, United States)
Kiefer, W. S. (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Greenbelt, MD, United States)
Nerem, R. S. (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Greenbelt, MD, United States)
Roark, J. H. (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Greenbelt, MD, 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 3: N-Z
Subject Category
LUNAR AND PLANETARY EXPLORATION
Distribution Limits
Public
Copyright
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.

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