Start date:
December 2014
End date:
January 2015
Various sites
Principle Investigator:
Michael Malin
Malin Space Science Systems
During the 1983 to 1984 field seasons, over 5000 rock targets were installed at five heights facing the 4 ordinal directions at 10 locations (with an additional site containing fewer materials) to study rates of physical weathering due primarily to eolian abrasion.
In addition, rock cubes and cylinders were deployed at each site to examine effects of chemical weathering. Initial studies indicate that measurable mass loss occurred annually, even at sites with very little mobile mineral debris available, showing that the measurement techniques had the requisite sensitivity. This proposal addresses the return of samples after 31 years, and analysis of the mass loss data in light of complementary environmental and sand kinetic energy flux data. It promises to improve insights into the principal active geomorphic process in the Dry Valleys.