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Iron mineralogy of the surface of Mars from the 1 μm band spectral properties



[1] We study the 1 μm absorption from OMEGA/MEX spectra to map Martian iron mineralogy at a global scale. This band is covered on the left by the VNIR (visible and near infrared) OMEGA channel and on the right by the SWIR (short wavelengths infrared) one. We first perform a systematic spatial coregistration of the two channels after an improvement of the VNIR radiometric calibration. The update of the VNIR Instrumental Transfer Function (ITF) and the internal stray-light estimation is based on the spectra of the Phobos red units and of the water ice north polar cap of Mars, which have been fitted according to an iterative process. The level of the signal in the blue wavelength range, previously systematically overestimated due to a stray-light residual and the general shape of the spectrum forλ > 0.7 μm are improved . Global maps of the 1 μm signature have been derived from 9 new spectral indices. The largest values of the 1 μm band integral are found in Noachian terrains and in the dunes around the north polar cap. In the south polar region, an area centered at ∼155°W and ∼83°S is mapped as a distinctive spectral unit, dominated by pyroxene. The northern lowlands of Mars together with other dark terrains located in the northern hemisphere show very low values of some spectral indices due to the negative spectral slope in the NIR. This behavior is consistent with the presence of weathered basalts with a possible glassy or amorphous component. Among the hydrated terrains, the only ones that can be isolated by studying the 1 μm band are those located in Terra Meridiani, Aram Chaos and Capri Chasma, enriched in sulfate and hematite. On the other hand, the sulfates of the dark dunes surrounding the northern polar cap and the phyllosilicates of the bright hydrated deposits of Mawrth Vallis cannot be isolated combining the parameters used in this study. This suggests that their distinctive mineralogy does not affect the 1 μm band, remaining similar to the global Martian average shape.

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