UTSA

THE UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS AT SAN ANTONIO

DEPARTMENT OF EARTH AND ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

Laboratory for Remote Sensing and Geoinformatics

 

Directed by  Dr. Hongjie Xie , Associate Professor

Remote Sensing for Mars Research

 

        The seasonal polar ice caps are a major element of the current Mars¨ climate and circulation. Understanding the sublimation and condensation of CO2 and H2O is a key to understanding recent, current, and future Martian climate and their seasonal changes. The impact craters or crater-like features at the seasonal polar cap regions, especially those associated with high-albedo deposits/events (HAEs) of ice and frost observed in late spring to summer seasons, have provided a good opportunity to study H2O and CO2 condensation and sublimation.

        The wet and warm conditions of early Mars imply that life might have emerged, and may still be present on Mars (Schulze-Makuch and Irwin, 2004). Thus, any site associated with liquid water may also harbour the potential for life on Mars. The hydrologic history of Mars has been reconstructed from a variety of indicators, which include 1) geomorphology such as shorelines, gullies, channels, valleys and alluvial fans; 2) sedimentary structures such as layered deposits, cross bedding, and layered evaporites; and 3) mineralogy such as hydrated phyllosilicates, hydrated sulphates and other hydroxide minerals.  The presence of hydrated minerals on Mars provides a record of water-related processes. Hydrated sulphates have been observed with the OMEGA, in numerous light-toned layered deposits in Valles Mariners, Aram Chaos, and Terra Meridiani (Gendri et al. 2005) and in deposits adjacent to the north polar cap (Langevin et al. 2005). Observations of variety of sulphates in layered rocks in Terra Meridiani also required an active hydrologic system to account for these deposits (Squyers et al. 2004).

The goals of the LRSG group for the Mars study, supported by UTSA, NASA/Texas Space Grant, and Chinese NSF, are to study:

(1) Martian polar ice caps and their climate and biological implications,

(2) Implication of Martian gullies formation and possible water relation, and

(3) Implication of phyllosilicates, hydrated sulphates, and chloride bearing regions for liquid water and possible bio-signature on Mars.

 

Projects

Project Title Funding Source
Mars Express/OMEGA surface spectra retrieving methods and mineral detection Chinese NSF
Martian surface compositions and H2O/CO2 circulation investigations using OMEGA and THEMIS data NASA/Texas Space Grant Consortium New Investigations Program (TSGC NIP)
Mars remote sensing for determining Martian evolution of the surface and interior UTSA Faculty Research Award

 

Publications

(*first author student, **first author postdoc/visiting professor)

 

*Yue, Z., H. Xie, K. Di, and Z. Ouyang, 2012. Mapping lunar olivine using Clementine spectral indices and chemical composition parameters. ACTA GEOLOGICA SINICA, Vol. 86 (1): 65-72. doi: 10.1111/j.1755-6724.2012.00611.x.(link)

**Fan, C., H. Xie, J. Wu, and S. Birnbaum, 2012. Analysis of USGS spectral library of silicate minerals: Implication for remote sensing applications. Journal of Applied Remote Sensing. doi:10.1117/1.JRS.6.063514 (link)

*Yue, Z., H. Xie, J. Liu, and Z. Ouyang, 2010. Potential origination of gullies developed on sand dunes and its implications to gullies on crater rims. Earth Science-Journal of China University of Geosciences, Vol 35(2): 291-301, doi:10.3799/dqkx.2010.030 (link).

**Fan, C., H. Xie, D. Schulze-Makuch, S.F. Ackley, 2010. A formation mechanism for hematite-rich spherules on Mars. Planetary and Space Science 58(3):401-410, doi:10.1016/j.pss.2009.11.001 (link).

**Zhu, M, H, Xie, and H. Guan, 2010. Algorithm development for Martian atmospheric correction and spatiotemporal variation study of atmospheric profiles. MARS, The International Journal of Mars Science and Exploration. Vol 5, 61-67, DOI: 10.1555/mars.2010.0002 (link).

*Fan, C., D. Schulze-Makuch, H. Xie, and N. Lu, 2009. Investigation of water signatures at gully-exposed sites on Mars by hyperspectral image analysis.  Planetary and Space Science, Vol.57 (1):93-104. doi:10.1016/j.pss.2008.10.011 (link)

Xie, H., H. Guan, M. Zhu, M. Thueson, S.F. Ackley, and Z. Yue, 2008. A conceptual model for explanation of albedo changes in Martian craters. Planetary and Space Science, Vol 56/7: 887-894, doi:10.1016/j.pss.2008.01.012 (link).

 

 

(Presentations or proceedings)

 

Xu, D., Z. Zeng, Z. Yue, J. Wang, Z. Zhang, S. Birnbaum, H. Xie, and D. Yan. A case study of an application of fractal theory to gully's alcove on Mars. 40th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, abs#2481, March 23-27, Houston City, Texas. 2 p. (link)

**Zeng, Z., Z. Zhang, S. Birnbaum, H. Xie, W. Yang. Global dynamical significance of zigzag fractures in south polar ice cap of Mars. 40th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, abs#1225, March 23-27, Houston City, Texas. 2 p. (link)

*Fan, C., H. Xie, D. Schulze-Makuch, and S. Ackley. A likely formation mechanism for the hematite-rich spherules in the equatorial region of western Mars. 40th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, abs#1470, March 23-27, Houston City, Texas. 2 p. (link)

Xiao, Z., Z. Zeng, H. Xie, S. Birnbaum, and Z. Zhang. A preliminary study on the effect of Linar-dust movement on the Lunar magnetic field. 40th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, abs#1227, March 23-27, Houston City, Texas. 2 p. (link)

**Zeng, Z., N.E. Putzig, H. Xie, S. Birnbaum, S.F. Ackley, and L. Liu, 2008. Evidence of fractures in NPLD and their significance to the formation of Martian polar spiral troughs. 39th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, abs#2179, March 10-14, League City, Texas. 2 p. (pdf)

**Zeng, Z., H. Xie, S.J. Birnbaum, S.F. Ackley and L. Liu, 2008. A structural solution for the formation of dunes in the Martian polar region. 39th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, abs#2050, March 10-14, League City, Texas. 2 p. (pdf)

*Thueson, M.A. and H.Xie, 2007. Water ice and carbon dioxide ice interactions: crater investigations in residual north polar ice cap. The Seventh International Conference on Mars. July 9-13, Pasadena, CA. 3p. (pdf)

Xie, H., S. Ackley, Z. Zeng, F. Qiu, 2007. Permafrost and its implication in 'Louth' crater (70.5N, 103.2E) of Mars. The Seventh International Conference on Mars. July 9-13, Pasadena, CA. 4p. (pdf)

**Zeng, Z., H. Xie, S. Birnbaum, L. Liu, W. Yang, 2007. New insight on the origin of spiral troughs in Martian polar ice caps. The Seventh International Conference on Mars. July 9-13, Pasadena, CA. 4p. (pdf)

Ackley, S.F., P. Wagner, and H. Xie, 2007. Sea ice ridging and rafting structures: is the microstructural controlled transition from ductile to brittle behavior on Earth also seen on Mars? 38th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, abs#2035, March 12-16, League City, Texas. 2 p. (pdf)

*Thueson, M. and H. Xie, 2007. Water ice investigation in crater of residual polar region using THEMIS data. 38th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, abs#2355, March 12-16, League City, Texas. 2 p. (pdf).

*Wagner, P., H. Xie, M. Zhu, and H. Guan, 2007. Using OMEGA data to determine the optical depths of water vapor absorption bands in the Martian atmosphere. 38th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, abs#2065, March 12-16, League City, Texas. 2 p. (pdf)

Xie, H., H. Guan, M. Zhu, and M. Thueson, 2007. A conceptual model of H2O/CO2 frost sublimation and condensation caused albedo change in crater interiors, Martian seasonal polar cap regions. 38th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, abs#2079, March 12-16, League City, Texas. 2 p. (pdf)

*Yue, Z., H. Xie, J. Liu, and Z. Ouyang, 2007. An introduction of Chinese Lunar exploration program. 38th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, abs#2082, March 12-16, League City, Texas. 2 p. (pdf)

**Zeng, Z., S. Birnbaum, H. Xie, Li Liu, M. Zhu, W. Yang, 2007. Three-dimensional numerical modeling of Tharsis Binucleus-type vortex structure on Mars. 38th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, abs#1210, March 12-16, League City, Texas. 2 p. (pdf) 

Xie, H., M. Zhu, H. Guan, and R.K. Smith, 2006. Isolated water ice in an unnamed crater away from the residual north polar cap of mars: the only one? 37th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, abs#1764, March 13-17, League City, Texas. 2 p. (pdf)

**Zhu, M., H. Xie, H. Guan, and R.K. Smith, 2006. Mineral and lithologic mapping of martian low albedo regions using OMEGA data. 37th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, abs#2173, March 13-17, League City, Texas. 2 p. (pdf)

**Guan, H., H. Xie, and M. Zhu, 2006. Development of an alternative Martian atmospheric correction algorithm for OMEGA/Mars Express imagery. 37th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference, abs#1934, March 13-17, League City, Texas. 2 p. (pdf)

**Zeng, Z., S Birnbaum, M Zhu, H Xie, L Liu, 2006. Tharsis Binucleus-Type Vortex Structure (TBVS) on Mars: implications for differential rotation of Mars. AGU Fall meeting, San Francisco, CA, December 11-15. (link)

 


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Last Updated: October, 2013