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Where is Devon Island?

asked 2016-05-01 22:33:44 -0600

Pascal Le Dramont gravatar image

Where is Devon Island and why is it a good analogous Mars site?

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answered 2016-05-02 23:18:10 -0600

Rob Mueller gravatar image

updated 2016-05-02 23:31:28 -0600

The Haughton meteorite impact structure on Devon Island, Nunavut in the high Canadian Arctic, is one of the most Mars-like places on Earth. The Haughton structure, at 75°22'N longitude and 89°41'W latitude, is a 23 Ma old impact crater about 20 km in diameter (Osinski et al., 2001). Host rocks of the structure are of Ordovician and Silurian age, mostly of the Allen Bay formation (Scott and Hajnal, 1988). The impact has left a very impressive scar on the landscape.


The Haughton Crater resembles the Mars surface in more ways than any other place on Earth. Although other locations, particularly other polar regions, may share Haughton Crater’s Mars-like landscape of dry, unvegetated, rocky terrain and extreme environmental conditions, what makes Haughton unique is the crater itself.

The surface of Mars is covered with craters of all different sizes, so the terrain, like a demolition site, is made up of loose rock. The terrain at Haughton Crater is similarly covered with loose rock, making it a good analog for researching extravehicular activities (EVAs) and mining technologies. Haughton Crater is also a valuable analog for science research, since it contains an uncannily large variety of Mars-like geological features. Also, Haughton Crater resides on an isolated, uninhabited island with no infrastructure, which makes this an ideal analog for planetary exploration research.


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Asked: 2016-05-01 22:33:44 -0600

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Last updated: May 02 '16