2014 GSA Annual Meeting in Vancouver, British Columbia (19–22 October 2014)

Paper No. 329-10
Presentation Time: 3:30 PM

ACTIVITY OF AND SEDIMENT FLUXES FROM AEOLIAN BEDFORMS IN HERSCHEL CRATER, MARS


RUNYON, Kirby D., Earth and Planetary Science Dept, Johns Hopkins University, 3400 North Charles Street, Baltimore, MD 21218, BRIDGES, Nathan T., Applied Physics Laboratory, Johns Hopkins University, Laurel, MD 20723, PELLETIER, Jon, Department of Geosciences, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ 85721 and AYOUB, Francois, Geological and Planetary Sciences, Caltech, 1200 EAST CALIFORNIA BOULEVARD, Pasadena, CA 91125, nasaman58@gmail.com

Herschel Crater, Mars, hosts extensive fields of sand dunes and sand sheets. The dunes are predominantely barchan and barchanoid and exhibit active migration of both their slip faces and their superposing aeolian ripples. This activity indicates a near-constant wind azimuth out of the north-northeast above fluid threshold and slower, more frequent winds above grain impact threshold.

Here, we present relations for 1) total and 2) constituent sand flux from ripple migration and slip face advance; and 3) dune celerity as a function of dune height (proxied by the dune volume-surface area ratio) paying attention for any deviations from from a simple 1/height relation.

Our study uses HiRISE orthoimagery overlain on DEMs to track the movement of aeolian ripple patterns using an ENVI software package called Co-Registration of Optically Sensed Images and Correlation (COSI-Corr). COSI-Corr tracks ripple pattern displacements down to ~8 cm (~1/3 of a pixel) and we are expanding the number and type of Martian aeolian environments to characterize, both within and outside of Herschel Crater.

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