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 (w x h)
 Produced By:  Cornell University 
 Full-Res TIFF:  PIA08063.tif (787.5 kB)
 Full-Res JPEG:  PIA08063.jpg (38.55 kB)

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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.

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