Project number: 20-27624Y
Project title: Synthetic and Comparative Hydrology of Earth, MArs and TitAn (SCHEMATA)
Programme: GAČR Junior
Project leader: Ioannis Markonis
Contact person: Petr Bašta
Project schedule: 2020-2022
Budget: 4,031 000. Kč
Our research project aims to address a key research question: Can the current morphologies of drainage basins be tied to climatic or other physical properties that can provide information about Mars’s past hydroclimatic conditions and Titan’s current state? Earth, Mars, and Titan are the only known planetary bodies of our solar system that maintain, or maintained at some point in their recent past, active flowing liquids, which gave a rise to the formation of river networks. These liquid flows, generated by atmospheric precipitation, eroded the topography of the surfaces, generating manifold landscapes observable on remote sensing data. Evidence for this interplay between atmosphere, hydro(carbon)sphere, and lithosphere is imprinted in drainage basins, also known as watersheds or catchments. Such drainage basins are ideal candidates for comparative planetology studies as they highlight past fluvial activity in a visually compelling manner. Here, we propose a project in which we will investigate how the information gained through the drainage basins morphologies is linked to the prevailing climatic conditions of a body in the time of drainage basin formation. Understanding how hydrologic processes are connected to observable geologic surface features, will give us insights on periods and places where climatic data are not available.