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The Martian Surface: Composition, Mineralogy and Physical Properties

Series: Cambridge Planetary Science Volume: 9

Edited By: Jim Bell

668 pages, 32 colour plates, b/w photos, b/w illustrations, tables

Cambridge University Press

Hardback | Jun 2008 | #173300 | ISBN-13: 9780521866989
Availability: Usually dispatched within 6 days Details
NHBS Price: £116.00 $152/€130 approx

About this book

Phenomenal new observations from Earth-based telescopes and Mars-based orbiters, landers, and rovers have dramatically advanced our understanding of the past environments on Mars. These include the first global-scale infrared and reflectance spectroscopic maps of the surface, leading to the discovery of key minerals indicative of specific past climate conditions; the discovery of large reservoirs of subsurface water ice; and the detailed in situ roving investigations of three new landing sites.

This an important, new overview of the compositional and mineralogic properties of Mars since the last major study published in 1992. An exciting resource for all researchers and students in planetary science, astronomy, space exploration, planetary geology, and planetary geochemistry where specialized terms are explained to be easily understood by all who are just entering the field.

On the whole, this is a strongly multidisciplinary reference book that contains a lot of technical information, all pitched at a high scientific standard. The bulk o fit may at first seem inaccessible to non-experts. However, most of the papers are written in such a way as to make it possible for the non-expert to gloss over the details, while still developing a feel for the essential points. Anyone with some background in planetary science, geochemistry, astronomy, astriobiology or space exploration stands to learn an extensive amount about the state of the art in Mars science at present. ...A reference book like this great to have at hand for both experts and students, as we follow the progress of our next European mission towards finding a destination on the surface of Mars.
- Danielle Wills, Astrobiology Society of Britain



Part I. Introduction and Historical Perspective
1. Exploration of the Martian surface: 1992-2007
2. Historical context: the pre-MGS view of Mars' surface composition

Part II. Elemental Composition: Orbital and In Situ Surface Measurements

Part II. A. Results and Interpretations from New In Situ APXS Measurements
3. Martian surface chemistry: APXS results from the Pathfinder landing site
4. Mars exploration rovers - chemical composition by the APXS

Part II. B. Results and Interpretations from New Orbital Elemental Measurements
5. Elemental abundances determined via the Mars Odyssey GRS
6. Volatiles on Mars: scientific results from the Mars Odyssey Neutron Spectrometer

Part III. Mineralogy and Remote Sensing of Rocks, Soil, Dust, and Ices

Part III. A. Visible to Near-IR Telescopic and Orbital Measurements
7. Mineralogy of the Martian surface from Mars Express OMEGA Observations
8. Visible to near-IR multispectral orbital observations

Part III. B. Mid-IR and Magnetic Orbital Measurements
9. Global mineralogy mapped from the Mars Global Surveyor Thermal Emission Spectrometer
10. The compositional diversity and physical properties mapped from the Mars Odyssey Thermal Emission Imaging System
11. Mars' crustal magnetization: a window into the past

Part III. C. Observations from Surface Landers/Rovers
12. Multispectral imaging from Mars Pathfinder
13. Mars Exploration Rover Pancam multispectral imaging of rocks, soil, and dust at Gusev Crater and Meridiani Planum
14. The mineralogy of Gusev Crater and Meridiani Planum derived from the Miniature Thermal Emission Spectrometers on the Spirit and Opportunity Rovers
15. Iron mineralogy and aqueous alteration on Mars from the MER M#ssbauer Spectrometers
16. Magnetic properties results from surface landers and rovers

Part III. D
17. Martian meteorites as crustal samples

Part IV. Physical Properties of Surface Materials
18. The thermal inertia of the surface of Mars
19. Physical properties of the Martian surface from spectrophotometric observations
20. In-situ observations of the physical properties of the Martian surface
21. Martian surface properties from joint analyses of orbital, Earth-based, and surface observations

Part V. Synthesis
22. Implications of the observed primary lithologies
23. Aqueous alteration on Mars
24. The sedimentary rock cycle of Mars
25. Implications for Martian polar processes
26. Astrobiological implications of Mars surface composition and properties

Part VI
27. Summary, upcoming missions, and new measurement needs


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Jim Bell is an Associate Professor in the Department of Astronomy at Cornell University. He is the lead scientist for the Pancam color imaging system on the NASA Mars Exploration Rovers Spirit and Opportunity, and is also a member of the science teams of the NASA Mars Pathfinder, Near Earth Asteroid Rendezvous (NEAR), Mars 2001 Odyssey Orbiter, Mars 2005 Reconnaissance Orbiter, and 2009 Mars Science Laboratory rover mission teams. He has authored or co-authored more than 150 peer-reviewed scientific papers on Mars, is an editor for Icarus, and has an asteroid named after him (8146 Jimbell) by the International Astronomical Union.

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