Evidence from opportunity's microscopic imager for water on Meridiani Planum

K. E. Herkenhoff, S. W. Squyres, R. Arvidson, D. S. Bass, James Bell, P. Bertelsen, B. L. Ehlmann, W. Farrand, L. Gaddis, R. Greeley, J. Grotzinger, A. G. Hayes, S. F. Hviid, J. R. Johnson, B. Jolliff, K. M. Kinch, A. H. Knoll, M. B. Madsen, J. N. Maki, S. M. McLennanH. Y. McSween, D. W. Ming, J. W. Rice, L. Richter, M. Sims, P. H. Smith, L. A. Soderblom, N. Spanovich, R. Sullivan, S. Thompson, T. Wdowiak, C. Weitz, P. Whelley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

111 Scopus citations


The Microscopic Imager on the Opportunity rover analyzed textures of soils and rocks at Meridiani Planum at a scale of 31 micrometers per pixel. The uppermost millimeter of some soils is weakly cemented, whereas other soils show little evidence of cohesion. Rock outcrops are laminated on a millimeter scale; image mosaics of cross-stratification suggest that some sediments were deposited by flowing water. Vugs in some outcrop faces are probably molds formed by dissolution of relatively soluble minerals during diagenesis. Microscopic images support the hypothesis that hematite-rich spherules observed in outcrops and soils also formed diagenetically as concretions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1727-1730
Number of pages4
Issue number5702
Publication statusPublished - Dec 3 2004
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

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Cite this

Herkenhoff, K. E., Squyres, S. W., Arvidson, R., Bass, D. S., Bell, J., Bertelsen, P., ... Whelley, P. (2004). Evidence from opportunity's microscopic imager for water on Meridiani Planum. Science, 306(5702), 1727-1730. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.1105286