Mars’ mantle may be more complicated than previously thought – making it far more similar to Earth, and potentially making it easier for Man to survive there.
Researchers analysed Elysium, a giant volcanic complex on Mars, the second largest behind Olympic Mons, which rises to twice the height of Earth’s Mount Everest, or approximately 16 kilometers.
They found the red planet’s mantle is far more similar the Earth’s than thought.
They found that the unusual chemistry of lava flows around Elysium is consistent with an underlying mantle that melts at different temperatures as areas rise to the surface over time.
The findings indicate that Mars is a much more geologically complex body than originally thought, perhaps due to various loading effects on the mantle caused by the weight of giant volcanoes.
‘It’s more Earth-like than moon-like,’ said LSU Geology and Geophysics graduate researcher David Suskosaid, who led the research.