Andrew Ryan, a first year graduate student from Arizona State University studied the high-resolution images captured by Nasa's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter and noticed more than 200 spiral patterns near the southern margin of Cerberus Palus. He found that the spiral patterns resembled snail's or nautilus shells and were left behind by lava flows on the Athabasca Valles near the Mars' equator.
Lava flows have been discovered on earth such as the flow on the Big Island of Hawaii and also in submarine lava flows near the Galapagos Rift on the Pacific Ocean floor. But this is the first time that lava flows have been found on Mars, reported Space. "This is the first time lava coils have been identified on an extraterrestrial setting. The most surprising thing about these features when I first saw them was how well-preserved they are,"Andrew Ryan told Space.