Recent findings help scientists find the answer to a question which has been on their minds for years: how was it possible for craters to form on Mars without the action of tectonic plates? So far, this movement was the most likely scenario, since this is the situation on Earth.
Now, after many years of research, they might have a theory. Once, Mars was covered in vast floods which spread over its surface after bursting unexpectedly. The waters which came flooding managed to carve canyons on Mars’s surface. Late images show that these craters are still visible.
Geological processes modified the Red Planet’s surface
According to the newest information released by scientists, Mars’s surface might have been substantially modified by geologic processes. Researchers got this idea by looking at the shape of some rocks from the planet.
The findings were compiled in a paper published this week in the Geology journal. Tim Goudge, lead author, declared that the team also noticed the presence of some dried areas which used to be large lakes with vast amounts of water.
Some of these lakes were as wide as the Caspian Sea, so it was easy to cause devastating floods. When they got too full, they overflowed, causing huge floods with the capacity to create canyons in just a few weeks.
Thanks to a series of satellite images, scientists could see that there are a lot of craters on the Red Planet’s surface. All of them are the result of huge floods and were carved in a short amount of time. Besides, they have been there for 3.7 billion years.
This situation is different on Earth. As we know, dramatic changes, like canyon formation, happen in millions of years and they are the results of tectonic plates’ movements. Scientists say that these conclusions help them learn more about the shape and action of water on Mars’s surface over the years.