Latest Eos Chaos Stories
A new study from ETH Zurich geoscientists Giovanni Leone, however, suggests that lava, rather than water or tectonic plate activity, cut the gigantic valleys into the red planet's landscape.
Beautiful streamlined islands and narrow gorges were carved by fast-flowing water pounding through a small, plateau region near the southeastern margin of the vast Vallis Marineris canyon system.
Valles Marineris stretches over 4000 kilometers in length and is 200 kilometers wide, with a maximum depth of 10 kilometers. This makes it 10 times longer and five times deeper than the Grand Canyon, earning it the title of the largest canyon in the Solar System.
These images, taken by the High Resolution Stereo Camera (HRSC) on board ESAâ€™s Mars Express spacecraft, show Coprates Chasma, a major trough in the Valles Marineris canyon system.
How does an arid and bone-dry landscape form the largest canyon in the solar system? The question on Mars maps to the Valles Marineris, a crack in the planet so large as to dwarf the Grand Canyon and a primary imaging target for the Mars Express spacecraft.