Observational evidence of crystalline iron oxides on Mars

J. F. Bell, T. B. McCord, P. D. Owensby

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

136 Scopus citations


Visible to near-IR (0.4-1.0 μm) spectral reflectance observations of Mars during the 1988 opposition were performed at Mauna Kea Observatory using a circular variable filter spectrometer at a spectral resolution R = λ/Δλ ≃ 80. Comparison of results with laboratory spectra obtained by other workers supports the conclusion that a single iron oxide phase, most likely hematite, could account for all of the observed spectral behavior of the Martian surface soils and airborne dust in the 0.4-1.0 μm region. This possibility must be reconciled with data from other possible spectral analogs and other wavelength regions as well as geochemical and mineral stability considerations to arrive at a more complete understanding of the role of ferric minerals in Martian surface mineralogy and weathering. -from Authors

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)14,447-14,461
JournalJournal of geophysical research
Issue numberB9
StatePublished - 1990
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Forestry
  • Oceanography
  • Aquatic Science
  • Ecology
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Soil Science
  • Geochemistry and Petrology
  • Earth-Surface Processes
  • Atmospheric Science
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Space and Planetary Science
  • Palaeontology


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