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What is Olympus Mons?

Lying in the Tharsis Montes region of the Martian landscape, Olympus Mons is a sprawling giant of a volcano, towering 22km above the surrounding region, and a total of 27km above the average height of the Martian surface.

What type of volcano is Olympus Mons on Mars?

Unlike on Earth, the crust of Mars remains fixed over a stationary hotspot, and a volcano can continue to discharge lava until it reaches an enormous height. Being a shield volcano, Olympus Mons has a very gently sloping profile. The average slope on the volcano's flanks is only 5%.

What is the chemical composition of Olympus Mons?

The composition of Olympus Mons is approximately 44% silicates, 17.5% iron oxides (which give the planet its red coloration), 7% aluminum, 6% magnesium, 6% calcium, and particularly high proportions of sulfur dioxide with 7%.

What is the drop off rim of Olympus Mons?

Surrounding this incredible peak is a drop-off rim, or scarp, which plunges 4 miles down to the Martian surface. In terms of volume, Olympus Mons is 100 times greater than even the largest volcanoes present on our planet.

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