Mapping the layered geology of Mars

Mapping the layers on Mars
Click for original image.

Today’s cool image is an update of a previous cool image from July 2021. Then, I posted a captioned high resolution Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) photo of the many terraced layers within a 13-mile-wide crater dubbed Jiji and located in Arabia Terra, the largest transition zone between the Red Planet’s northern lowland plains and the southern cratered highlands. At that time the caption noted that research was on-going to see if the same layers could be identified in two other nearby craters, Banes and Sera, and thus use that data to extrapolate the long term geological history of this region on Mars.

Today’s cool image to the right, rotated, cropped, reduced, and enhanced to post here, was taken on January 4, 2024 as part of this research, and shows the layers in 18-mile-wide Sera crater, located only about ten miles to the east of Jiji crater. The highest mesa near the bottom of the picture is about twenty feet high on its southern side, but about 140 feet high to the north. The difference is because the crater floor under the mesa is sloping downward to its lowest point to the north.
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