Des images inédites du plus grand canyon du Système solaire

Ius Chasma, à gauche, Tithonium Chasma, à droite, sont une partie de l'immense canyon Valles Marineris. © ESA, DLR, FU Berlin, CC BY-SA 3.0 IGO

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[EN VIDÉO] Mars: fly over the Korolev crater!
Fly over the frozen Korolev crater, located near the polar cap of Mars, as if you were there!

Our neighbor the Red Planet is not called Mars by chance, it is of course its red color clearly visible in theeye naked from the Earth, which earned him the name of god of war in Rome (inherited from Babylon and Greece). So, when two millennia after Caesar, from 1962 to 1971, the Mariner probes for the first time revealed details of Mars like never before seen, revealing a world desolate and dry, and sporting a huge gash nearly 4,000 kilometers long,? how not? think of the face of a wounded warrior. Called Valles Marineris in honor of Mariner 9 who made its discovery, this impressive wound due to its dimensions is none other than the longest, widest and deepest canyon in the world. Solar system.

Their the formation would be related to the tectonic plate that tore in this place billions of years ago, leaving a very spectacular indentation that ends in the west with a network of valleys, the Labyrinth of Night. Here in these images taken by the venerable European space probe Mars Express — he knows the Red Planet “like the back of his hand” since he has been flying over it for almost 20 years — we are not far from it, precisely to the east, opposite Tithonium Chasma and Ius Chasma cannons.

In the depths of Valles Marineris

On the walls of these two notches, the action of the wind that for billions of years has been the Foreman of this environment, patiently eroding it, unlike the Grand Canyon on Earth (much smaller), excavated by the Colorado River. Debris accumulates at the bottom, thousands of meters below. There, moreover, nothing is smooth or icy. There are many reliefs, of diverse origin, such as mountains that culminate at more than 3,000 meters, also furrowed and furrowed by the winds. Finally, reports the ESA, between these two mountains there are potholes rich in minerals sulfates containing water »that keep the memory of the very ancient precious liquid in these deep gorges in places of 7 kilometers.

Mars is a paradise for geologists who reads in these images of Mars Express and also of Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter the fascinating past of this planet close to ours.

In Pictures: Visit Hebes Chasma Canyon

article of Xavier Demeersmann published on October 17, 2013

Thanks to the images captured by the European space probe Mars Express (ESA), it explores with an unparalleled level of detail the reliefs of Hebes Chasma, a vast Martian canyon corroded by billions of years of erosion.

the Red planet presents a wide variety of landscapes with which we are increasingly familiar. Furthermore, it is not uncommon to find some that echo what we know on Earth: here The study of volcanoes is volcanology or volcanology. Volcanic activity is one of…” data-image=” jpg” data- url=”” data-more=”Read more”>volcanoes, certainly giants, there are valleys of debacles or dry rivers. Without forgetting the cannons of disproportionate dimensions as Valles Marineris, the most famous in the solar system, which extends over almost 4,000 km. An impressive scar on the face of Mars, perfectly visible from space.

The region has several scars, all probably formed during the first billion years of the planet’s history. For exogeologists, its origin must be sought in the lifting of the titanic volcanoes of the group of Tharsis Mountains dominated by the immense Mount Olympus, 23 km high and as wide as France. Stretched, the continental crust forms, as its name suggests, the continents. It is essentially from…” data-image=”” data- url=”” data-more=”Read more”>Cortex Martian would then have broken, bleeding at multiple points. Billions of years after this geological event, we discover these open wounds transformed by erosion, thanks to the cameras of the orbiters present at the site.

The strange Hebes Chasma canyon on Mars

About 300 km north of Valles Marineris is Hebes Chasma (Photos up and down), another injury to the area. The canyon extends from east to west for about 315 km, and from north to south for 125 km, for a depth of almost 8 km! Taking a closer look at the mosaic of eight highly detailed images, captured between 2004 and 2009 by the HRSC camera (High resolution stereo camera) from the Mars Express probe, scientists noted several interesting points.

The one that catches their attention the most is the long plateau, or low hill, remaining in the center of the depression whose summit is at the same height as the surrounding environment. The data acquired by MRO (Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter) from NASA and the European space probe show that its walls, in addition to the materials of volcanic origin that are buried throughout the region, are characterized by layers of sediments lakeand are carpeted with dust scattered and moved by the trade winds or several When this collapse refers to coherent rocks, we can also speak of a rock slide.
The result of this…” data-image=” ” data-url=”” data-more=”Read More”>ground slides.

One of the curiosities of this damaged landscape is the horseshoe-shaped part, visible at one of its ends. On the description and use of debris
They can be made of stone, concrete, ceramic, brick or tile. To get rid of them, you have to put them in rubble bags… 5404feff8d-o-02.jpg” data-url=” ” data -more=”Read more”>debris from a collapsed wall, we can make out a long flow of dark material that ends, below, in a strange puddle of black ink. It is not excluded that the cause is a sudden melting of ice or outpouring from underground deposits.

Impossible to ignore the multiple grooves engraved on the slopes of the low hill, testimonies of the relative fragility of the rocks of the building. His study revealed the presence of hydrated minerals, which only form in the sustained presence ofliquid water. A lake probably occupied this deep depression for at least several thousand years before disappearing. Subject to erosion windswater and landslides, the Hebes Chasma canyon continues to grow.

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