Data from the Phobos 2 Imaging Spectrometer for Mars (ISM), compiled by Mustard et al. , and other observations support the existence of komatiitic lavas on Mars. Mustard et al.  determined from ISM data that the composition of the low‐albedo materials covering the Syrtis Major plateau originally consisted of augite‐bearing basalt containing both augite and pigeonite, with no appreciable amount of olivine. This description is consistent with a komatiitic basalt. Komatiite is significant for the Earth because it contains a high amount of MgO, implying generation under unique circumstances compared to more typical basaltic compositions and may be similarly important for Mars.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)