Present-day heat flow model of Mars



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Parro, Laura M. and Jiménez Díaz, Alberto and Mansilla, Federico and Ruiz Pérez, Javier (2017) Present-day heat flow model of Mars. Scientific Reports, 7 . pp. 1-9. ISSN ISSN: 2045-2322 ; ESSN: 2045-2322

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Until the acquisition of in-situ measurements, the study of the present-day heat flow of Mars must rely on indirect methods, mainly based on the relation between the thermal state of the lithosphere and its mechanical strength, or on theoretical models of internal evolution. Here, we present a first-order global model for the present-day surface heat flow for Mars, based on the radiogenic heat production of the crust and mantle, on scaling of heat flow variations arising from crustal thickness and topography variations, and on the heat flow derived from the effective elastic thickness of the lithosphere beneath the North Polar Region. Our preferred model finds heat flows varying between 14 and 25 mW m−2, with an average value of 19 mW m−2. Similar results (although about ten percent higher) are obtained if we use heat flow based on the lithospheric strength of the South Polar Region. Moreover, expressing our results in terms of the Urey ratio (the ratio between total internal heat production and total heat loss through the surface), we estimate values close to 0.7–0.75, which indicates a moderate contribution of secular cooling to the heat flow of Mars (consistent with the low heat flow values deduced from lithosphere strength), unless heat-producing elements abundances for Mars are subchondritic.

Item Type:Article
Subjects:Sciences > Geology > Geodynamics
ID Code:47700
Deposited On:25 May 2018 06:38
Last Modified:25 May 2018 08:46

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