Did Rivers of Silicone Dust Carve the Gullies and Canyons of Mars?

by Charles Weber, MS

I suggest that the canyons of Mars were carved by rivers of silicone dust created from silica and methane millions of years ago, the creation energized by ultraviolet and\or ions from the sun.

Mars is a very arid planet. It has been dry for an extremely long time [Kerr 2003] [Kerr 2007] [Bibring]. I can almost conceive of an ocean of hydrogen as derived from water evaporating into space leaving very little behind [Catling]. However, I have great difficulty accepting the concept of an ocean of oxygen as derived from water evaporating completely or driven off as ions [Lundin] [Barabash], (as it would have to have been, as there is very little free oxygen on Mars) or what would probably be more necessary, as water. Of course a fairly large amount of water probably exists under the polar caps [Praut], not enough for an ocean, but probably enough for significant erosion in very early times if it could have remained unfrozen. Also, where are the ancient series of parallel beaches left behind as the ocean evaporates, the deltas [Milton1, p1932], the river meanders, or the barrier islands? Where are the carbonate deposits [Bandfield] laid down in this ancient ocean or other ocean deposits [Malin, 2001 p1935]? Only carbonates from hydrothermal solutions are known [Morris]. It has been suggested that an ancient ocean was acidified with sulfurous acid and thus no possibility of carbonate formation [Halevy]. This is plausible if there had been an ocean. But that would not account for recent erosion. There are scattered deposits of a white material on Mars, which is thought to be chlorides deposited in its earliest history [Osterloo] and the nature of minerals deposited on Mars such as magnesium and calcium chlorides and magnesium sulfate indicate very concentrated solutions for a long time, perhaps 3.5 billion years [Tosca]. If it is chloride, there is little chance of rain on Mars for a long time. Mars is a very cold planet; where are the extensive glacial moraines, the U-shaped valleys, the horns, or the boulders carried out to sea? There are deposits suspected of being glacial flows, but they are recent and local off the north west slopes of a few volcanoes [Forget]. Evidence from Martian meteorites suggest that Mars has been below freezing for 4 billion years [Shuster]. Some have suggested a large volume of water or water/carbon dioxide hydrate [Milton] withdrawn from this ocean by storage underground. In this crazy universe, I suppose anything is possible, but somehow that much ash and volcanic rubble seems unlikely to me. Also, why wasn't water stored there back then? As for water suddenly being released from such an underground storage again and again, that is impossible. The widespread presence of jarosite on Mars, which jarosite is crystals of ferric sulfate, indicates very dry conditions after its formation. Jarosite degrades under moist conditions, and is only found on Earth in extremely dry deserts [Madden]. Jarosite is formed on Earth by sulfuric acid generated by emissions from a volcano in Hawaii [Schiffman]. Olivine and pyroxene are widespread on Mars. Since these minerals can not remain intact in the presence of water [Christiansen, p 35] Mars must have been dry for a long time. The only water discovered so far are tiny isolated pockets near the north pole such as this one. There is evidence of clay minerals (phylosilicates) that require water to form in ancient deposits. However kaolinite clay, which would be expected in an area of active hydrological flushing, has been identified in only a few locations less than 200 meters across [Mustard]. So far none of the major and minor outflow channels or valley networks show evidence of hydrated minerals, but rather they are on the surrounding plateau and its eroded flanks [Biring].

I suspect that what actually happened was that these canyons were carved out by silicone rivers. Mars has much volcanic lava on the surface, and because of much less water erosion than earth or more likely, none, slow cooling batholiths, if any, should be unexposed. Therefore, fast cooling of surface lava from which surface dust is derived must have created extremely small silica particles. I suspect that when Mars first formed the surface layers were even higher in silica than present day lavas, similar to earth’s continental rocks. Many may have consisted of only a few hundred or even dozen atoms when the surrounding metallic silicate rock disintegrated. Ultraviolet light gets to the surface easily now and could have then. I suspect it provides plenty of energy to form bonds between the methane which almost certainly existed at that time [Yung] and the silica surfaces. A methane atmosphere on Uranus the moon called Titan strongly hints at the possibility of a methane atmosphere on early Mars. Silicon is fairly high in Martian soils [Baird] and it is possible that some of it is silica [McLennan]. Indeed, some soils are almost 100% minute silica particles smaller than a few hundred micrometers as determined by absorption spectra, as well as rocks [Squyres 2008]. Also, it is conceivable that water solutions could have degraded any metallic silicates to eventually end up as silica early on. There was certainly an enormous amount of time to form the bonds and plenty of surface area for the ultraviolet light to act upon when dust was wafted aloft. There is also the possibility that ions from the sun could have been involved for dust aloft, for Mars has a very weak magnetic field [Stanley] to deflect the ions. These silicones are very stable and can reasonably be expected to last a long time because of being little affected by any plausible chemical reactions. Any small silane molecules which might have formed would probably not remain as an uncondensable gas because when these molecules are bombarded with ions (as from the sun), they condense to form longer chains with a release of hydrogen [Jolly]. Both silanes and silicones also have very low Van der Waals forces so that the “dust” particles would behave like a liquid. Their liquid status should be much enhanced if they were separated by molecules of methane gas which must have been much denser billions of years ago. Even extremely fine silica particles not coated by silicone will not support a weight placed on them if they have been surrounded by air [Lohse], so the viscosity may have approached zero. When Martian methane winds wafted them aloft, they should also have some of the attributes of a gas, and a rather dense gas at that. Any "condensed" out upslope would flow down hill. Such a dense material would be able to flow down a very low gradient and thus account for the extremely long canyons observed. The "condensation" and “evaporation” could take place at low temperatures because silicones do not stick to each other even at low temperatures.

Because of their small Van der Waals forces, these particles would not affect the rocks while flowing and slide over them in sheets. For that matter distilled water would have little affect either. However, there is no reason why they could not carry along molecules of water, ammonium carbonate, carbonic acid, or more likely, sulfurous [Halevy] or sulfuric acid [Bullock] [McCollam] [Squyras 2006], which could disintegrate rock and thus create the gullies. If you are willing to grant other theorists an ocean, surely you would be willing to grant me a few molecules of water and sulfurous or sulfuric acid. Also, minute particles of silicon carbide, corundum, silicon nitride and diamonds from meteorites [Dai] and other hard particles such as aluminum oxide from the eroded rocks carried along could have an abrasive effect continued for billions of years. Besides, much of the terrain these rivers flowed over were probably wind borne deposits later [Malin, 2001 p1933] and therefore probably poorly consolidated. Indeed, most of the silicones probably formed long before the large canyons. Finely divided, dry particles are capable of flowing here on earth even when they contain hundreds of thousands of atoms and even when made of a fairly sticky material like aluminum dust. There is no reason to suspect that it could not have happened on Mars with smaller and much less sticky molecules.

If the gullies and canyons were carved into “sedimentary rock”, creating them would be even easier. Recent detailed photos suggest that the surface within 30 degrees of the equator is composed of layers of particles cemented together several thousand meters thick. Even craters 100 kilometers across or more are filled with these “sediments” [Malin 2001]. This means that these layers must have been laid down from a previous atmospheric transport billions of years ago. If so, that makes carving of the subsequent canyons by a silicone dust river even more plausible.

An ocean of silicone is not necessary. Indeed, the reason many Martian gullies seem to often suddenly disappear may be because the topography at that time was such that they entered a local depression to form a silicone lake. They would not leave a delta because the fine particles abraded off the rocks by the diamond particles, etc., would not suddenly precipitate out like earth generated clays suddenly entering salt water. Indeed, most of the particles were probably lighter than the “fluid”. Similarly, at their source, the suddenness with which some commence may be because they originated in the overflow of a graben [Carr]. Smaller sudden origins may be because the surface rock is harder than the underlying material. Such a phenomenon may be visible in this photograph.

Treiman is of the opinion that the gullies were carved by dust. He says that gullies were carved all over, in all ages, and on al terrains, and that there are no rocks in the gullies and that they are most numerous on the leeward slopes in the mid latitudes [Treiman]. This silicone fluid probably does not exist in anything like the volume today that it did then and may be nonexistent on the surface because of the current oxidizing atmosphere.

The recent discovery of small gullies which are recent by virtue of no impact craters implies that something like this may continue at present though. They seem to have shapes that resemble snow avalanches here on earth somewhat [Malin 2006 p1575] and resemble loose debris [Kerr 2007]. They are almost all located on the cold pole ward facing slopes within 30 and 70 degrees latitude and commence part way down the slope. Perhaps in the equatorial regions and on equator facing slopes tiny amounts of water and acid were able to seep into the ground in the past and cement the particles together somewhat. You may see pictures of recent gullies here.

Hoffman has suggested that dust flows fluidized by carbon dioxide may have caused the ancient canyons. For my hypothesis to be valid, it surely must be necessary for some of this former silicone fluid to have been trapped in some of the "sediments" which settled out downstream. Also there is a good chance that some of the sediments have some silicone groups on their surface. This could be the reason for massive debris flows into some of the craters next to a hill [Head]. Kraal thinks they are deltas from a huge release of water [Kraal, with a good picture], but mass wasting slides or avalanches are much more likely. The shock of an impact could make some Martian soils thixotropic, those with just the correct composition of silicone. Layers of some kind of material are widespread on Mars, as many as a hundred ten meter thick layers having been discovered where canyons slice through [Treiman p46,52]. If these silicone particles exist there, they would surely tend to elevate this hypothesis to the status of a theory. Thus, we would have a reasonable alternative to the hopeless water hypothesis. A good place to start the search would be those rocks which have been found to be high in silica [McSween] or the meteorites hitting earth that are suspected of originating from a Martian impact. This may not be possible because meteorites landing on the Earth from Mars are said to be all igneous. Also, neutron bombardment of the top one meter of Martian soil has recently disclosed hydrogen (see this site for a hydrogen map). This is consistent with the presence of silicones. Also methane has been detected in the atmosphere of Mars [Formisano] [Atreya] [Mumma]. This implies a current source, which could be degradation of silicones, because the atmosphere of Mars is oxidizing and would continuously remove methane from the atmosphere. Electrical conductivity probes have disclosed no water films even at 100% relative humidity. It is thus conceivable that the soils of Mars are hydrophobic like silicones. That dust could have existed then is quite plausible because there are violent dust storms miles high with tornado force winds even on today’s Mars. For a picture of a modern tornado see here. There are also dust spout miniature tornadoes. There are violent dust storms miles high with tornado force winds even on today’s Mars.


----For a hypothesis that explains the large volcanoes of Mars and the bulges associated with them as the disruption from the antipode (opposite side of a sphere) of a huge meteorite or comet impact, see this site.
----It has been proposed that the Decca traps were caused by violent movement of the crust in the antipode (opposite side of a sphere) opposite to a Cretaceous meteorite or comet impact. If this and other lava flow sites prove to be formed this way, it will be strong evidence against continental drift.
----This site attempts to explain the huge Valles Marineris canyon from a moonlet impact.
----For some dramatic views of a travel to Mars and then to outer space, a trip which would take thousands of years even inside our own galaxy, but compressed into 12 minutes, see this site.
----For the site of a large planetary society see here.
----For a theory which attempts to explain quasars as an optical illusion created by gravitational lensing of the light from the opposite jet of an enormous mass WITHIN the quasar see this site.
----For a theory which attempts to explain the cosmological red shift as resulting from gravitational interaction of photons with masses passed in space, see this site.
----You may see pictures of quasars and AGNs here. or links to other sites here.
----The Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) has links to images of quasars and galaxies in this site.
----For a group that disputes the big bang and its newsletter.
----Lerner lists numerous contradictions to the big bang hypothesis here.
----You also may find useful a site which gives abstracts of journal articles in the physical sciences.
----For a fascinating site which views the Universe in steps of a factor of ten (or 1000 if you consider volume) see this site.
----For views of the Universe from increasing distances try this site.
----For some dramatic views of a virtual travel to Mars and then to outer space, a trip which would take thousands of years even inside our own galaxy, but compressed into 12 minutes, see this site.
----If you are interested in relativity theory, you may find some theory and a link from this site to solar system animations.
----See here for a site that gives weekly information about the night sky for amateur astronomers, including positions of planets, comets, star clusters, etc. and some informative articles.
----Another amateur astronomer site that shows how to view distant galaxies, including how to find and links to suppliers is here
----You will probably be entranced by very beautiful pictures of objects in space.
----For a site that proposes a thin plate hypothesis to explain the plates in the crust of the earth, see this site. It has a link that explains the formation of ocean trenches.
----All you need to know about physical constants.

----If you would like to read a science fiction yarn about five women who blasted out into outer space to establish a colony on the planet of a distant star, read this.


VIII. You may see here the way to acquire a very comprehensive book about potassium nutrition and physiology. It is called “POTASSIUM NUTRITION in Heart Disease, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Gout, Diabetes, Metabolic Shock, and High Blood Pressure”. The table of contents and the introduction are shown. A couple of the first chapters may also be seen in this site.

Strategies for Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) and fibromyalgia --------- When blood potassium is too high

The pioneering efforts about potassium for arthritis by Charles de Coti-Marsh enabled him to form a foundation currently active in England that promotes the use of potassium for arthritis and it has helped 3500 people.

There is an article discussing cashew nuts to cure a tooth abscess Which will prove useful
There is also an article which proposes some speculation about diabetes.
There is evidence that cell phones can produce tumors. Using remote ear phones would seem to be a good idea.
Fluoride in city water will cause fluorosis discoloration of teeth, weakened bones, damage to the kidneys, thyroid, and immune system, bone cancer, and, worst of all, damage to the nerves resembling Alzheimer’s disease. It will also cause damage to ligaments resembling arthritis. For a forum that discusses iodide (an antidote for fluoride) access this site.

See this site for some links to health articles.
For a procedure that discusses tetrathiomolybdate for removing copper and thus preventing further solid cancer growth and Hodgkin’s, see this site. This might buy some time until you can persuade a doctor to try tumor necrosis factor or interferon or an opioid antagonist drug called Naltrexone (Naltrexone in the large 50 mg size, originally manufactured by DuPont under the brand name ReVia, is now sold by Mallinckrodt as Depade and by Barr Laboratories under the generic name naltrexone) that blocks some endorphin receptors. Said blockage is thought to cause the body to temporarily secrete more endorphins, especially after midnight at night. These endorphins are thought to stimulate the immune system, and in particular to stimulate the TH-1 or type 1 antiviral response by decreased interleukin-4 and with increased gamma interferon and interleukin-2 and a simultaneous decrease of type 2 anti bacterial response [Sacerdote]. It appears to be especially effective for minimizing symptoms and retarding progression of multiple sclerosis (MS) There are drugs listed in this site that should not be taken with low dose Naltrexone, including cortisol. There is information in this site for mitigating side effects, including starting with one milligram doses. Advice how to proceed if you have been taking cortisol may be seen here. (also see these sites; this site and this site and a trial) . A few doctors have had encouraging results in Crohn's Disease, and even to some extent in cancer. Low doses of Naltrexone (LDN), 1.5 to 4.5 milligrams, at bedtime is used (timing is important, and it is important not to buy slow release forms). It is said to have no known bad side effects at those doses other than insomnia the first week or two in some. There is also reports from an extensive survey in this site. and an extensive discussion at this site. I think some clinical studies on Naltrexone are in order, and it should not be a prescription drug (I have a petition to make Naltrexone an over the counter drug with the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research FDA Rockville MD 20857, Re; Docket No. 2006P-0508-CPI. Perhaps if enough people wrote supporting the petition it could be enacted). Though side effects appear unlikely, it is not proven over longer periods. If you try it (it is a prescription medicine in the USA), it seems likely that you should discontinue if you get a bacterial infection in view of its inhibition of antibacterial response. It is also Dr. Gale Guyer of Advanced Medical Center located in Zionsville, Indiana also is using it for cancer. Dr. Bihari has shown promising results for a large percentage of his cancer patients.

Olive leaf extract has shown clinical evidence of effectiveness against a wide range of viruses, including AIDS [Bihari], herpes, and cold viruses. It sometimes produces a Herxheimer or pathogen die off symptoms (from effectiveness against bacteria?). There is evidence that it is synergistic (reinforce each other) with Naltrexone. There have been a few case histories of improvement in what were probably arthritis patients and CFIDS patients. The active ingredient is said to be oleuropein or enolate. There has been very little follow up research done on it.

Also it has been found that curcumin in turmeric or curry powder will inhibit several forms of cancer, including melanoma. People who live in India where these spices are eaten, have one tenth the cancer elsewhere. It must be used with caution because it can sometimes aggravate the situation [Stix].

Here is an article with anecdotal evidence for pressurized oxygen, zinc, vitamin B6, and vitamin C after head injuries. They also claim a fair percentage of prison inmates from psychiatric disorders after head injuries.
See this site for evidence of a correlation between magnesium deficiency and cancer. The taurate has been proposed as the best magnesium supplement. Since taurine is physiologically active, this may prove to not be the case long term. Taurine or 2-aminoethanesulfonic acid is an acidic chemical substance sulfonated rather than carboxylated found in high abundance in the tissues of many animals (metazoa), especially sea animals. Taurine is also found in plants, fungi, and some bacterial species, but in far less abundance. It is an amine with a sulfonic acid functional group, but it is not an amino acid in the biological sense, not being one of the twenty protein-forming compounds encoded by the universal genetic code. Small polypeptides have been identified as containing taurine, but to date there has been no report of a transfer RNA that is specifically charged with taurine [from Wikipedia]. It is essential to babies and is the most abundant brain amino acid at birth. With maturation babies start to synthesize taurine and glutamate becomes the most abundant in the brain of adults. It is essential to adult cats. It has been found that supplements of the amino acid, taurine, will restore the abnormal electrocardiogram present during a potassium deficiency by an unknown mechanism. This information has been used in several case histories by George Eby to control a long standing type of cardiac arrhythmia called pre atrial contractions (PACs), a benign but irritating and nerve racking heart problem, with 2.5 grams of taurine with each meal. Taurine is said to be low in the diets of vegetarians. The 2.5 grams recommended by the American Heart Association causes diarrhea in some people and should probably be reduced in those people.

There is strong evidence that taurine could have beneficial affects on type I diabetes, and could reduce organ peroxidation and plasma lipids. The retina, lens, and nerves respond better to taurine than other organs [Franconi]. Taurine has been used for high blood pressure [Fujita], migraine headache (I suspect that less than 1000 milligrams can remove the headache caused by allergy to peanuts), high cholesterol, epilepsy, macular degeneration, Alzheimer’s disease, liver disorders, alcoholism, and cystic fibrosis, and depression. Keep in mind that some people may have a genetic defect that limits the amount of taurine tolerated and that adequate molybdenum may desirable. Taurine may make a copper deficiency worse, based on a single case history [Brien Quirk, private communication]. This may be because taurine may be mobilizing copper and zinc into the plasma [Li]. So if you should decide to take taurine, make sure your copper intake is more than adequate, as well as your zinc. Taurine may be obtaind from health food stores as capsules.

A site is available which shows. foods which are high in one nutrient and low in another (including calories). This last site should be especially useful for a quick list of foods to consider first, or for those who must restrict another nutrient because of a genetic difficulty with absorption or utilization There is a free browser called Firefox, which is said to be less susceptible to viruses or crashes, has many interesting features, imports information from Iexplore while leaving Iexplore intact. You can also install their emailer. A feature that lists all the URLs on a viewed site can be useful when working on your own site and its source view color codes the html code.

There is a free program available which tells on your site what web site accessed your site, which search engine, statistics about which country, statistics of search engine access, keywords used and their frequency. It can be very useful.


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Email to Charles Weber = isoptera1 at yahoo.com --or -- 828 692 5816 (USA)

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Created Dec. 2008. Updated April 2014