Martian Tsunamis Ground Zero Located; Ocean on Mars Argument Placed to RestBy Ava Jones, UniversityHerald Reporter
Impact crater seen on the red planet is now being linked to Martian tsunamis, which have swept Mars a long time ago. Scientists from Université Paris Sud in France believe that powerful tsunamis rocked the planet three billion years ago and that they have found the source of the catastrophic event. More than that, the debate that there's no ocean on Mars is finally ut to rest with this new found evidence.
The Lomonosov crater, which is located on the northern plains of Mars, fits the description that it's a crater formed from massive tsunamis and it's the location where the tsunamis were formed. The details were outlined during the 48th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, BBC reported. Scientists who are keeping an eye on Mars have concluded that the lowland region of the northerly latitude has been filled with ocean water.
Massive tsunamis as high as 300ft or more wrought havoc in the planet exactly 3.4 billion years ago. This is also what NASA believed. In 2016, a NASA-funded study indicates that giant tsunamis played a role that ultimately shaped Mars' coastal terrain but it didn't show enough support to conclude that large bodies of water once filled Mars.
It was once debated that Mars is nothing but a giant red dry land and that oceans are not part of it. Now this recent findings offer strong evidence that oceans indeed were part of the planet, Cosmos Magazine reported. Now that the source of the Martian tsunami is finally located, scientists can rest the argument about the cold and dry planet that is Mars.
Dr. Francois Costard, the geomorphologist who led the study said when the asteroid hit the red planet the waves it formed over 300ft tall. They would've reached as high as 80 metres when they swept the coast carrying with them thick sediment deposits. These giant waves washed plateaus and hills, but one tsunami was not what wormed Mars today.
Evidence suggests it took two tsunamis, a phenomenon that can only occur if there's a Martian ocean to fill in the crater. When the tsunami hit the crater it made a rebound and a second wave propagation as Dr. Costard suggested. Mars then is indeed once a water-rich planet.