A Mountain That Sticks Out Into Space

Olympus Mons, with caldera, aureole and escarpment.

Olympus Mons is a vast volcanic mountain on Mars that soars to a height of nearly 14 miles, making it two and a half times as tall as Mount Everest and the tallest peak in the solar system.

Because it’s spread over an area the size of Arizona, its slopes are so mild and gentle that it resembles a warrior’s shield from the top. One of its flanks, though, is marked by an daunting escarpment—that is, a steep cliff.

h/t: E.S.A.


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