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These enhanced-color views are part of the floor of Coprates Chasma in giant Valles Marineris. A single image area (only about 1.1 by 9 kilometers) shows a tremendous variety of rock types, as indicated by their colors and textures.

These areas include ancient (more than 3 billion year-old) fractured and faulted blocks of bedrock (mostly lighter-toned areas with a range of colors, plus some dark blue areas), overlain in places by younger sediments deposited by wind and water (smoother image areas).

The bedrock with warm colors (yellow to red) has been altered by water. It would be wonderful to land a rover here for surface exploration and perhaps return rock samples to study on Earth.

Image: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona

Source: Light-Toned Materials on the Floor of Coprates Chasma


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