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THEMIS observes possible cave skylights on Mars

January 1, 2007

Seven possible skylight entrances into Martian caves were observed on and around the flanks of Arsia Mons by the Mars Odyssey Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS). Distinct from impact craters, collapse pits or any other surface feature on Mars, these candidates appear to be deep dark holes at visible wavelengths while infrared observations show their thermal behaviors to be consistent with subsurface materials. Diameters range from 100 m to 225 m, and derived minimum depths range between 68 m and 130 m. Most candidates seem directly related to pitcraters, and may have formed in a similar manner with overhanging ceilings that remain intact.

Publication Year 2007
Title THEMIS observes possible cave skylights on Mars
DOI 10.1029/2007GL030709
Authors Glen Cushing, Timothy N. Titus, J. Judson Wynne, P. R. Christensen
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Geophysical Research Letters
Index ID 70031447
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Astrogeology Science Center