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Olympus_Mons_SE_flank_large.jpg

Hundreds of individual lava flows are seen frozen in time on the flanks of Olympus Mons, the largest volcano in the Solar System.
The images, taken on 21 January 2013 by ESA's Mars Express, focus on the southeast segment of the giant volcano, which towers some 22 km above the surrounding plains. This is more than double the height of Mauna Kea, the tallest volcano on Earth at 10 km, when measured from its oceanic base to summit.

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Landslides and lava flows at Olympus Mons on Mars

Sulci_Gordii_node_full_image.jpg

Giant landslides, lava flows and tectonic forces are behind this dynamic scene captured recently by ESA's Mars Express of a region scarred by the Solar System's largest volcano, Olympus Mons.
The image was taken on 23 January by the spacecraft's high-resolution stereo camera, and focuses on a region known as Sulci Gordii, which lies about 200 km east of Olympus Mons.
 
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Mammut is looking ahead and keen to pursue ambitious goals: The Mammut Alpine School is seeking to become the first mountaineering training body to offer tours of the mountains of Mars. The new challenge facing alpinists of the future is the Red Planet's Olympus Mons, which is 26.4 km in height.
Any ascent of Olympus Mons will be tough from the very beginning. The mountain is surrounded by a 500 km wide band of rock debris. Up to 6000 meters in height, this wall of debris has to be overcome before moving on to the next step. The distance from there to the summit is at least another 200 km. To keep the distances down, the plan would be for the expedition to start on the south-eastern flank of the mountain. With their back to the three Tharsis Montes, the mountaineers would begin at the base camp and immediately have to tackle the key challenge. This takes the form of 200 rope lengths of superb free-climbing, much of it vertical with almost no overhangs.

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Ed ~ We can all dream



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The solar system's biggest volcano, Olympus Mons, is lopsided. And that odd shape strengthens the case that Martian life is hiding out deep in the mountain's bowels, according to a new study.

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Scientists have constructed models of the Olympus Mons volcano on Mars, in order to uncover the mechanism that generates the distinctive features of its shape, namely the form of a "circus tent".

The immense Olympus Mons volcano on Mars (about 23 km tall and 600 km wide) exhibits a somewhat lopsided structure: elongated to the northwest, shortened to the southeast, with corresponding types of faulting (extensional and compressional, respectively) prevalent in each sector.
However, the overall shape of the edifice is characterised by a decrease in slope with increasing distance from the center, somewhat like the surface of a tent that is supported by a single central pole.
In order to uncover the mechanism that generates the distinctive features of the shape of Olympus Mons, Patrick J. McGovern and Julia K. Morgan, Lunar and Planetary Institute, Universities Space Research Association, constructed models of Olympus Mons as collections of particles that slip and slide past each other, controlled by the weight of other particles and the friction value assigned to each.
They find that a low-friction zone at the base of the volcanic pile is required, and lateral variations in basal friction are critical. Friction decreasing outward from the center of the edifice can explain the overall "circus tent" shape, whereas friction decreasing from southeast to northwest accounts for the shortening and elongation of the respective quadrants.

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A trio of volcanoes on Mars may have been created by a similar geologic process to the one that formed the Hawaiian Islands, a new study says.
The observations also suggest that the three Martian volcanoes might not be extinct.

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Rugged Olympus Mons

This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows a 1.5 metres per pixel view of a portion of the upper west flank of the giant Martian volcano, Olympus Mons.
Although considered to be young relative to much of Mars, at high resolution the Olympus Mons volcano turns out to have one of the most heavily cratered surfaces--at the scale of small craters of tens of meters diameter and smaller, on the planet.
In other words, while the volcano may be a geologically young feature, it is still very ancient and inactive.
A segment of a lava channel (likely a collapsed lava tube) is present in this scene.


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Location: 17.9deg N, 134.6deg W
Image width: about 3 km




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