• Landform evolution of Tharsis Montes and Olympus Mons of Mars: Insights from morphometric, hypsometric and chronologic evidences

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      https://www.ias.ac.in/article/fulltext/jess/130/0172

    • Keywords

       

      Mars; surface; volcanism; tectonics.

    • Abstract

       

      We studied the growth and evolutionary history of four major volcanoes of the Tharsis Province based on morphometry, age and hypsometric studies. Shield volcanoes of Tharsis volcanic province demonstrate marginally dissimilar landform evolutionary trends. Arsia Mons is distinct with a single caldera of large diameter and showed the highest asymmetry in the apron development. A convex hypsometric curve of Arsia Mons indicates tectonic dominance in its evolution. Olympus Mons, on the other hand, is concave in shape, suggesting an erosion dominated landform. Olympus Mons shows the highest symmetry in its morphology as a cone, while Ascraeus Mons and Pavonis Mons display a deviation from the symmetry due to the development of aprons. We determined the age of the caldera and the surrounding region of the four major shield volcanoes of Tharsis Province using the crater counting technique. Chronological studies using the crater counting technique indicate that the significant part of the Tharsis volcanic province belongs to the Late Amazonian period ( <  300 Ma). Hypsometric studies indicate that Tharsis Montes are tectonically active, while Olympus Mons dominantly showed erosional activity in the recent past. Accordingly, the investigation of Tharsis Montes is a critical way to improve the understanding of evolutionary pathways of volcanic landforms of the Martian surface.

      $\bf{Highlights}$

      $\bullet$ We studied the landform evolution of four major shield volcanoes of Tharsis volcanic province.

      $\bullet$ Morphometric, chronologic and hypsometric analysis was carried out to understand the evolutionary trend.

      $\bullet$ Hypsometric curve analysis showed that the landform evolution of Arsia Mons is dominantly tectonic.

      $\bullet$ Chronological analysis shows that majority of the Tharsis volcanic province belongs to the Late Amazonian period.

    • Author Affiliations

       

      ADNAN AHMAD1 ARCHANA M NAIR1

      1. Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati, Guwahati, Assam 781 039, India.
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