PIA08063: 'Home Plate' Evidence for an Explosive Past
Target Name: Mars
Is a satellite of: Sol (our sun)
Mission: Mars Exploration Rover (MER)
Spacecraft: Spirit
Instrument: Panoramic Camera
Product Size: 512 x 512 pixels (width x height)
Produced By: Cornell University
Full-Res TIFF: PIA08063.tif (787.5 kB)
Full-Res JPEG: PIA08063.jpg (38.55 kB)

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Original Caption Released with Image:

This view of layers around the edge of a low plateau called "Home Plate" inside Mars' Gusev Crater includes a feature that may be what geologists call a "bomb sag" and interpret as evidence of an explosive event, such as a volcanic eruption.

The layers seen here are generally straight and parallel except in the lower right, where they dip around a greyish rock that is about 4 centimeters (about 1.5 inches) in diameter. When layered deposits are struck by a falling rock while the layers are still soft, this type of pattern can be created. The rock might have been lofted by a volcanic burst or as part of the material ejected by the crater-forming impact of a meteorite.

The panoramic camera (Pancam) on NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit acquired the exposures for this image on Spirit's 754th Martian day (Feb. 15, 2006). This view is an approximately true-color rendering mathematically generated from separate images taken through all of the left Pancam's 432-nanometer to 753-nanometer filters.

Image Credit:
NASA/JPL/Cornell

Image Addition Date:
2006-04-11