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Possible Site of Recent Martian Lakes


Perspective views of (top) the floor of a basin where Rodriguez and others propose in this investigation that shallow lakes could have formed within the last few tens of millions of years, and (below) the floor of a proposed Martian analog high mountain lake in the Tibetan plateau, where Rodriguez will conduct a field investigation this coming summer.  The arrows in both panels identify similar ridges that surround the basin's floor. In the Tibetan lake case, the ridges are thought to form as sediments are pushed outwards by the freezing waters. These types of ridges might be diagnostic shoreline feature of lakes that formed under extremely cold and dry Martian conditions. A key objective of the planned field expedition is to investigate these bizarre shoreline features and characterize their astrobiological potential.

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