Spokes Creep and Channels in a Crater in Utopia Planitia
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Spokes, Creep, and Channels in a Crater in Utopia Planitia

April 17, 2007
Image PSP_001910_2215 shows an unnamed impact crater located in Utopia Planitia; this crater is more than 10 km (6.25 miles) in diameter and 700 m (765 yards) deep. Different features in and around this crater may indicate fluid beneath the surface.

Linear features radiating outward from the crater's rim are evident in the upper right and lower right parts of this image. Closer examination shows these features are formed by rocks and finer soils that are located along a straight line; they are "spokes" produced immediately after the impact by very fast outward-moving materials ejected from the impact.

Because these ejecta came from deep under the crater, their composition will tell us what type of rocks are under the surface.

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