Did ice streams shape the largest channels on Mars?



[1] The largest channels on Mars are the Northwestern Slope Valleys (NSVs) of Tharsis, which have previously been interpreted as the probable erosional trace of catastrophic flooding. It is argued here that ice-streaming within ancient ice sheets emplaced by atmospheric precipitation at high mean obliquity may instead account for these channels, explaining similarities between the region and terrestrial Pleistocene subglacial landscapes. An ice-sheet model shows extensive basal melting in and only in the NSV region, and ice streams which have significant erosive power.