Presentation on theme: "[Mars Polar Caps] By: Ryan and Reina. General Info About the Polar Caps Knowledge that the martian polar caps consist almost entirely of water ice goes."— Presentation transcript:
General Info About the Polar Caps Knowledge that the martian polar caps consist almost entirely of water ice goes back only a few years Mars has ice caps at both its north and south polesMars Permanent portion of the north polar cap consists almost entirely of water ice
Before the Discovery Caps were mostly carbon dioxide and small amount was water idea dates back to 1966, when the first Mars spacecraft determined that the Martian atmosphere was largely carbon dioxide Scientists at the time thought that ice caps themselves were solid carbon dioxide and that the caps regulate the atmospheric pressure by evaporation and condensation
North/South Polar Caps After the observation by the Viking orbiters: North contains water ice underneath the dry ice South contains mostly dry ice In 2003, thermal images from Mars Global Surveyor and Mars Odyssey dis covered that both caps are mostly made by ice covered by a layer of carbon dioxide By this they thought both south and North are about the same material
What does is look like?? Circular pits 8 meters deep and 200 to 1,000 m in diameter (est..), and an outward growth rate of about one to three meters per year
What does the Polar Caps Mean? Means that Mars could have been warm and wet to begin with Based on the evidence discovered, one would assume that there was once sufficient carbon dioxide in the atmosphere to trap enough solar energy to warm the planet, but there's not enough carbon dioxide locked in the poles for this to clearly have been the case or it could be that the subterranean plumbing would allow for liquid water to be sealed off underneath the surface video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jhUhh F5-aYw&feature=related http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jhUhh F5-aYw&feature=related
Works Cited Cain, Fraser. "Mars Polar Caps." Universe Today. Universe Today, 9 June 2008. Web. 15 Apr. 2011.. "Mars Polar Cap Mystery Solved." Mars News, Science, Technology at MarsDaily.com. Web. 15 Apr. 2011.. "Polar Caps of Mars." The Worlds of David Darling. The Internet Encyclopedia of Science. Web. 15 Apr. 2011..