Overflowing lakes on Mars carved out canyons in a matter of weeks

Raging rivers and lakes once flowed over Mars and formed craters that burst and carved out canyons in just a few weeks.

A new study published in the journal Geology says that unlike Earth, which took millions of years to have canyons etched into its surface, Mars apparently had catastrophic floods that spilled out of craters and carved out canyons at a rapid speed.

Researchers examined photos taken by NASA's Mars Reconnaissance orbiter satellite to look at the remnants of these old canyons.

And while immense flooding craters sounds pretty crazy, a similar process happens on Earth when lakes damned by glaciers break through.

The difference is that because of the lack of plate tectonics on Mars, those old lakes and canyons are fairly permanent.

While on Earth, the slow and steady movement of the plates doesn't preserve large lakes for very long.

Find out more in the video above.

Read Full Story

FROM OUR PARTNERS