Upper mantle structure of Mars from InSight seismic data

Amir Khan, Savas Ceylan, Martin van Driel, Domenico Giardini, Philippe Lognonné, Henri Samuel, Nicholas C. Schmerr, Simon C. Stähler, Andrea C. Duran, Quancheng Huang, Doyeon Kim, Adrien Broquet, Constantinos Charalambous, John F. Clinton, Paul M. Davis, Mélanie Drilleau, Foivos Karakostas, Vedran Lekic, Scott M. McLennan, Ross R. MaguireChloé Michaut, Mark P. Panning, William T. Pike, Baptiste Pinot, Matthieu Plasman, John Robert Scholz, Rudolf Widmer-Schnidrig, Tilman Spohn, Suzanne E. Smrekar, William B. Banerdt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


For 2 years, the InSight lander has been recording seismic data on Mars that are vital to constrain the structure and thermochemical state of the planet. We used observations of direct (P and S) and surface-reflected (PP, PPP, SS, and SSS) body-wave phases from eight low-frequency marsquakes to constrain the interior structure to a depth of 800 kilometers. We found a structure compatible with a low-velocity zone associated with a thermal lithosphere much thicker than on Earth that is possibly related to a weak S-wave shadow zone at teleseismic distances. By combining the seismic constraints with geodynamic models, we predict that, relative to the primitive mantle, the crust is more enriched in heat-producing elements by a factor of 13 to 20. This enrichment is greater than suggested by gamma-ray surface mapping and has a moderate-to-elevated surface heat flow.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)434-438
Number of pages5
Issue number6553
StatePublished - Jul 23 2021
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


Dive into the research topics of 'Upper mantle structure of Mars from InSight seismic data'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this