Imaging and Spectroscopic Studies of the Martian Surface

Project: Research project

Description

We propose to expand on a precursor MDAP research program (grant NNX08AK89G; 2007-2011) focusing on investigations of the composition, mineralogy, and physical properties of the Martian surface using a combination of orbital and surface (rover) observations. Specifically, the four tasks proposed here are: (1) Enhanced and more robust re-processing, re-calibration, and PDS archiving of multispectral radiance, radiance factor (I/F), and relative reflectance (R*) data from the Mars Exploration Rover Pancam investigation; (2) Re-analysis of the newly-calibrated Pancam observations of the diverse range of fine-grained regolith ("soil") components observed at both rover sites and relating of derived spectral parameters and modeled endmembers to specific textural, compositional, and/or mineralogic units and thus specific potential soil-formation, transport, and aqueous alteration processes; (3) Analysis of globally mapped Mars Express OMEGA near-infrared and Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) TES mid-infrared spectra to evaluate the potential contribution of explosive volcanism to global compositional surface types; and (4) Analysis of global OMEGA and TES data sets to constrain the composition and provenance of global aeolian sediments and"sediment windows" where underlying primary composition material or bedrock may be exposed. The OMEGA-related parts of Tasks 3 and 4 represent a continuation of research begun under the P.I.'s precursor MDAP grant (NNX08AK89G), expanded to include TES data as well; Tasks 1 and 2 are new tasks for work not currently funded by the P.I.'s other programs or projects. All four tasks are related by the common themes of searching for (or enabling the search for) evidence of altered and/or hydrated minerals formed through water-rock interactions, and assessing the implications of the occurrences of such materials for the past climate and habitability of Mars.
StatusFinished
Effective start/end date5/16/125/15/16

Funding

  • NASA: Goddard Space Flight Center: $542,194.00

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Mars
radiance
explosive volcanism
water-rock interaction
regolith
research program
sediment
provenance
reflectance
bedrock
near infrared
mineralogy
physical property
calibration
climate
mineral
analysis
soil
material