The geology of Australian Mars analogue sites

Michael D. West*, Jonathan D.A. Clarke, Matilda Thomas, Colin F. Pain, Malcolm R. Walter

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    33 Citations (Scopus)


    Australia has numerous landforms and features, some unique, that provide a useful reference for interpreting the results of spacecraft orbiting Mars and exploring the martian surface. Examples of desert landforms, impact structures, relief inversion, long-term landscape evolution and hydrothermal systems that are relevant to Mars are outlined and the relevant literature reviewed. The Mars analogue value of Australia's acid lakes, hypersaline embayments and mound spring complexes is highlighted along with the Pilbara region, where the oldest convincing evidence of life guides exploration for early life on Mars. The distinctive characteristics of the Arkaroola Mars Analogue Region are also assessed and opportunities for future work in Australia are outlined.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)447-458
    Number of pages12
    JournalPlanetary and Space Science
    Issue number4
    Publication statusPublished - Mar 2010


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