Earth and Planetary Science
EPS Planetary Science

JUN 2007 - Evidence for an ancient martian ocean in the topography of deformed shorelines

In their recently published paper in Nature (reprint), Taylor Perron, Jerry Mitrovica, Michael Manga, Isamu Matsuyama and Mark Richards argue that there were once oceans on Mars, but that Mars has tipped over since they dried up. The northern plains are ringed by surface features that look like relic shorelines. However, long-wavelength trends in their elevation argue against the shoreline hypothesis. In this new study it is shown that polar wander can explain the shoreline deformation.