Mars Atmospheric Composition, Isotope Ratios and Seasonal Variations: Overview and Updates of the SAM Measurements at Gale Crater

C. R. Webster, P. R. Mahaffy, S. K. Atreya, P. G. Conrad, H. Franz, M. G. Trainer, M. H. Wong, M. A. Mischna, G. Flesch, K. A. Farley, T. C. Owen, P. B. Niles, J. H. Jones, L. E. Christensen, J. Martín-Torres, M. P. Zorzano

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract

Abstract

We will summarize the in situ measurements of atmospheric composition and the isotopic ratios of D/H in water, 13C/12C, 18O/16O, 17O/16O, and 13C18O/12C16O in carbon dioxide, 38Ar/36Ar, xKr/84Kr, and 15N/14N made in the martian atmosphere at Gale Crater from the Curiosity Rover using the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM)'s Quadrupole Mass Spectrometer (QMS) and Tunable Laser Spectrometer (TLS). With data over 700 sols since the Curiosity landing, we will discuss evidence and implications for changes on seasonal and other timescales. We will also present results for continued methane and methane enrichment experiments over this time period. Comparison between our measurements in the modern atmosphere and those of martian meteorites like ALH 84001 implies that the martian reservoirs of CO2 and H2O were largely established ~4 billion years ago, but that atmospheric loss or surface interaction may be still ongoing.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2014
Event2014 AGU Fall Meeting - San Francisco, United States
Duration: 15 Dec 201419 Dec 2014

Conference

Conference2014 AGU Fall Meeting
CountryUnited States
CitySan Francisco
Period15/12/1419/12/14

Keywords

  • 0343 Planetary atmospheres
  • ATMOSPHERIC COMPOSITION AND STRUCTURE
  • 6225 Mars
  • PLANETARY SCIENCES: SOLAR SYSTEM OBJECTS
  • 5405 Atmospheres
  • PLANETARY SCIENCES: SOLID SURFACE PLANETS
  • 5445 Meteorology

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