Lab Experiments


We conduct experiments in a Mars environment chamber which simulates the surface environment at a variety of pressure and temperature conditions. These laboratory investigations compliment remote sensing and theory-based hypotheses which have had limited physical testing.


Sediment flows throughout Mars history

We see evidence of past sediment flows on Mars during warm and cold climates, but we do not know much from laboratory experiments about how the extreme environment affects these processes. We conducted experiments in a vacuum chamber to simulate the environment at the martian surface in the present and in the past by varying surface pressure and temperature. 

We confirmed that flowing mud on Mars can freeze and flow like lava on Earth, or it can boil and levitate depending on the conditions. Many studies rely only on satellite data for interpreting flow features on Mars, so these experiments provide constraints on relevant processes.

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