Jennifer Anderson

Using intrusive volcanism to trigger Martian outflow channels: What conditions are needed to melt the cryosphere?

General Topic: Investigate different shapes and thermal structures for possible intrusions beneath Tharsis. Which possible shapes and thermal structures are able to melt the cryosphere and provide a possible outbreak source for the outflow channels, as suggested by Baker et al.?


1. Overview of Tharsis formation by giant plume and Baker's hypothesis that this plume is capable of melting the cryosphere enough to generate outflow channels.

2. Method -- Use Fourier analysis to investigate heat conduction through variously shaped intrusions into the surrounding lithosphere. Which shapes and initial temperature structures are able to melt through the cryosphere?

* Large intrusive body (simple heat conduction over a distance) * Intrusive dike (bring heat directly to near surface)

3. How long would it take to melt through the cryosphere using the above geometries and is this reasonable?

4. How might we further test Baker's hypothesis using the time, temperature and geometry relationships that I've found here?