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Photos Show Mars May Have Active Volcanoes

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posted on Dec, 22 2004 @ 01:18 PM
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By MATT CRENSON, AP National Writer

Photographs taken by a spacecraft orbiting Mars indicate that active volcanoes may still exist on the red planet, further eroding its image as a dead world and offering prime sites to prospect for signs of Martian life.

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Images from the European Space Agency's Mars Express Orbiter indicate geologically recent volcanic activity in the summit craters of five Martian volcanoes, with some areas showing activity as recently as 4 million years ago. Though long in human terms, 4 million years amounts to the most recent 1 percent of Martian history a strong suggestion that the planet retains a capacity for volcanic activity.

Yahoo


Mars shows us another of his secrets
An idea that mars is similar to earth is looking quite probably now. I wonder what will be the next great discovery.
Life???

[edit on 22-12-2004 by jazzgul]




posted on Dec, 22 2004 @ 02:03 PM
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I believe enterprisemission.com discussed evidence of geysers like 6 months ago...



posted on Dec, 22 2004 @ 02:05 PM
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with some areas showing activity as recently as 4 million years ago


Dude, that aint that small of an amount of time...
They said its core was cool and almost solid by now; they must have been wrong...

You know that sulfur in the atmosphere that they think is caused by life? It may have just came from a few mini volcanoes...



posted on Dec, 22 2004 @ 02:57 PM
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This reminds me of another similar topic, but I can't find it anymore...

I believed that volcanic activity and tectonic activity were closely tightly linked things, and thus, that no tectonic activity meant no volcanic activity... And now, Mars has no (no more?) tectonic activity. I thought then, that mars can't have volcanic activity???


E_T

posted on Dec, 23 2004 @ 04:59 AM
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Originally posted by SpookyVince
I believed that volcanic activity and tectonic activity were closely tightly linked things, and thus, that no tectonic activity meant no volcanic activity...
Actually there hasn't been much tectonic activity in Mars' past when volcanoes were active.
Without lack of tectonic activity Olympus Mons would be chain of much smaller volcanoes like Hawaii's islands.
Also there's other huge shield volcanoes.




The large shield volcanoes on Mars resemble Hawaiian shield volcanoes. They both have effusive eruptions which are relatively quiet and basaltic in nature. Both have summit pits or calderas and long lava flows or channels. The biggest difference between Martian and Terrestrial volcanoes is size. The volcanoes in the Tharsis region are 10 to 100 times larger than those on Earth. They were built from large magma chambers deep within the Martian crust. The Martian flows are also much longer. This is probably due to larger eruption rates and to lower gravity. One of the reasons volcanoes of such magnitude were able to form on Mars is because the hot volcanic regions in the mantle remained fixed relative to the surface for hundreds of millions of years. On Earth, the tectonic flow of the crust across the hot volcanic regions prevent large volcanoes from forming. The Hawaiian islands were created as the Pacific plate moved northwest. These volcanoes have a relatively short life time. As the plate moves new volcanoes form and the old ones become silent.
www.solarviews.com...



posted on Dec, 28 2004 @ 02:38 PM
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jazzgul: This is not "recent", it has been known for a long time that mars once had active volcanoes. But it does not anymore, whoever wrote this article does not know what they are talking about at all. "Strong suggestion", what a load of rubbish. 4 million years is not recent, Mars is believed to be about 4.5 billion years old.

Maybe it would be an idea to think twice before some thing like this is posted.



posted on Dec, 28 2004 @ 03:29 PM
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Thanks a lot E_T for the enlightenment...
I'll sleep less stupid tonight! This explains why there can be volcanoes with no or little tectonic activity...



posted on Dec, 28 2004 @ 04:25 PM
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Is there evidence that says for certain no molten core or mantle??

If not, then anything is possible. If Mars has natural nuclear materials (as we do) they give off warmth as well and can last for a while. I wouldn't rule out a completely dead planet just yet - life is pretty tenacious and if it started it is likely still there somewhere....



posted on Dec, 28 2004 @ 04:25 PM
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Originally posted by Rock Hunter
jazzgul: This is not "recent", it has been known for a long time that mars once had active volcanoes. But it does not anymore, whoever wrote this article does not know what they are talking about at all. "Strong suggestion", what a load of rubbish. 4 million years is not recent, Mars is believed to be about 4.5 billion years old.

Maybe it would be an idea to think twice before some thing like this is posted.


Rock Hunter -I believe you already new that long tine but as another news article says



Volcanos eject water and atmospheric gases, recycle mineral nutrients and reshape landscapes. The discovery once again raises the possibility that life might survive on Earth's colder, smaller, dustier neighbour.
"A year or two ago any planetary scientist I know would have said no, Mars has been quiet; it is no longer geologically active," said Alan Moorhouse, of the European spacecraft operations centre in Darmstadt, Germany.
"To find that there has been volcanic activity as recently as 2 million years ago is astounding. In geological terms, 2 million years is yesterday. Anything that happened yesterday can happen again today."


-I'm not geologist I don't poses this knowledge, but I'm eager to learn -if couple of news sites are interesting in this find I migth give it a chance

And another thing -In this article (the quote above is coming from) volcano's activity is mentioned already 2 milion years ago - The correct number (?). Well this might be my mistake I should do more research about that...

Here you have similar articles from USA Today and CBC

do you think, they are all ignorant?

with warm, holliday greetings, jazzgul



posted on Dec, 28 2004 @ 04:46 PM
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Ill be the first one here to admit that Im not to good when it comes to volcanoes and plate techtonics stuff. Hell i barely passed Earth Science. Got a 65 on the regents. Please please no applause. Anyway if there are active volcanoes then why dont they just find a volcanoe and watch it until it explodes or smokes or moves.



posted on Dec, 28 2004 @ 05:07 PM
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Croat56 - there are only a couple of birds over Mars and they are not in a geostationary orbit so they can't see the whole planet all the time - or even a portion of it for that matter.

Same with our scopes and birds here - Mars rotates and we both move so there are times when we would not see things although an eruption of any magnitude would light up our IR detectors well after said eruption occurred - if we were looking that is....



posted on Dec, 29 2004 @ 12:59 PM
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Jazzgul: I will have to apologise, in my haste I had read the article as 4 billions years, and not 4 million. My mistake, sorry for offending.


I should maybe read it better next time!!



posted on Dec, 29 2004 @ 08:55 PM
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Rock Hunter !

I found another interesting article which is covering the story:



Credit: NASA/JPL

"While Olympus Mons is dormant today, volcanologists are not entirely convinced more isn't going on geothermally on Mars. "If you'd asked me [if there were not active surface volcanoes] 10 years ago--or even 5--I might've said yes," said Gregg. "Now I'm not so sure."

On Mars, "where would I look for recent volcanic activity? Depends on how you want to define it on Mars," said Gregg. "I strongly suspect there are still molten (or at least mushy) magma bodies beneath the huge Tharsis volcanoes , and beneath Elysium Mons ."

"But the youngest surficial activity discovered to date (and it's probably 1 million years old, which would be considered quite young, and possibly 'active' on Mars) is in a region that contains no large volcanic structures of any kind," said Gregg. "Instead, there are cracks in the ground, and a few low-lying volcanoes that can't even be seen except in the high-resolution topography (they are too subtle for imagery to reveal). This area is called Cerberus Fossae ."

Astrobiology Magazine
Great pics as well:

Olympus Mons, the caldera. Olympus Mons has an average elevation of 22 kilometers and the caldera, or summit crater, has a depth of about 3 kilometers. The data was retrieved during orbit 143 of Mars Express on 24 February 2004. The view is looking north. Credit: ESA

Volcano near Spirit's landing site, Apollineris Patera, 120 miles northwest. Credit: NASA/JPL



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