Regolith Thickness

Measuring regolith thickness using tectonic landforms. Pit chains are tectonic landforms that have been identified across the solar system, on both icy and rocky planetary bodies. We measured the morphology of pit chains in northern Iceland to characterize how depth and diameter of individual pits can be used to estimate regolith thickness. Follow on work includes applying the results of this analog study to measure the variations in regolith thickness across Saturn’s moon Enceladus in an effort to constrain the thickness of plume material deposited across the surface.


Pit chains on Earth, Enceladus, Mars and Phobos. Images from Digital Globe, Cassini ISS, CTX and THEMIS, and HiRISE.

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