Martian Pedestal Crater
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Martian Pedestal Crater

September 27, 2012
This image is of a pedestal crater at 43 degrees north. The lobate pattern around the circular crater is where the crater ejecta landed. This area is now raised above the level of the surrounding plains, forming a mesa, or plateau, with the crater at the center.

This suggests that at one time the surface of the whole region was at this level. The ejecta from the crater covered the area near the crater and protected it, while the surrounding region was eroded away, leaving the crater high standing. This material may have been removed because it was loose and/or cemented with ice.

Pedestal craters are particularly interesting because some ice may still be present in the mesa, protected by the ejecta surface.

Written by: Patrick Russell

Credits: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

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