HiRISE: Layering in Spallanzani Crater

ESP_040258_1215In this recent HiRISE image, we can see quite a spectacular layering pattern inside an impact crater called Spallanzani. Seeing layering is always exciting to geologists because it implies that the region has experienced multiple climatic conditions or geologic processes through time. The study of layering is so important in geology that it has its own dedicated branch of study: stratigraphy! Commonly, layering implies different lithologies (i.e., rock types). However, sometimes the layers could be of very similar composition but formed in different periods of time. This could happen for example in the case of annual flood deposits from rivers, multiple volcanic eruptions, or annual or periodic deposition of ice-rich material. [More at link]

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