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Terms in this set (29)
The most important geological process occurring on Mars today is
Seasons on Mars
are similar to those on the Earth but twice as long
The lightly cratered terrain surrounding the Tharsis volcanoes represents which geological era?
Due to its elliptical orbit, Mars is closer to the Sun on average during winter in the Northern Hemisphere. This means Northern Winter on Mars will be
short and mild
What is the most likely origin of the Valles Marineris on Mars?
it is a tectonic fracture associated with the formation of the adjacent Tharsis bulge
The majority of the southern hemisphere of Mars represents which geological era?
The Tharsis region of Mars was most likely formed
by a plume of molten mantle material rising to the surface forming a giant bulge in the Martian crust
The extent to which Mars has been habitable essentially boils down to the
length of time liquid water has been present at or below its surface
What are the most likely sources of the methane gas detected in the Martian atmosphere by the Mars Express orbiter?
biological and/or volcanic acitivity
The water that formed many of the erosion features seen on Mars appears to have originated
from beneath the surface of the planet
The most important geological process that has removed craters from the Martian surface in the past is
If melted, the ice now known to be on Mars would represent water to cover the entire planet to a depth of
around 11 meters
We will probably never know for sure whether life started on Mars until we
can study rocks on Mars itself or return a sample to Earth for analysis
Significant quantities of water last flowed on the surface of Mars during which geological era?
What is the most significant drawback of possibly sending humans to Mars?
the high probability of contamination of the Martian surface by microbes associated with human beings
The most recent time that water appears to have flowed on Mars, if only briefly, is during the
Seasonal variations on Mars are due
to both its axis tilt and its changing distance from the Sun
Which of the following did NOT contribute to the thinning of the Martian atmosphere during its early history?
the consumption of carbon dioxide by photosynthetic bacteria
Compared to the Earth, Mars has experienced wild swings in its axis tilt over relatively short time periods. This is because of its
proximity to Jupiter and its lack of a large moon
Even though 95% of the Martian atmosphere is composed of carbon dioxide, the greenhouse effect on Mars today is very weak because its atmosphere is very
The large water erosion features on Mars appear to be
at least 2-3 billion years old
At the beginning of summer, the carbon dioxide at the summer pole
The first astronomer to claim to see linear features on the surface of Mars was
Liquid water cannot exist for very long on the surface of Mars today because
its atmosphere is too thin
The Southern hemisphere of Mars is at
a higher than average elevation and is covered with impact craters
The ancient water erosion features on the surface of Mars suggest that the planet must have had a much
warmer, thicker atmosphere in the past
What is the origin of Martian meteorites?
they are rocks blasted from the surface of Mars by impacts; these rocks then floated around in interplanetary space before falling to Earth
Where is probably the best place to find life on Mars today?
in geologically active areas like Tharsis where subsurface water may exist
During winter, the northern polar cap of Mars is made of
carbon dioxide ice overlaying water ice
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