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    Constraining the source regions of lunar meteorites using orbital geochemical data

    Calzada-Diaz, Abigail and Joy, K.H. and Crawford, Ian and Nordheim, T.A. (2015) Constraining the source regions of lunar meteorites using orbital geochemical data. Meteoritics and Planetary Science 50 (2), pp. 214-228. ISSN 1086-9379.

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    Lunar meteorites provide important new samples of the Moon remote from regions visited by the Apollo and Luna sample return missions. Petrologic and geochemical analysis of these meteorites, combined with orbital remote-sensing measurements have enabled additional discoveries about the composition and age of the lunar surface on a global scale. However, the interpretation of these samples is limited by the fact that we do not know the source region of any individual lunar meteorite. Here we investigate the link between meteorite and source region on the Moon using the Lunar Prospector Gamma Ray Spectrometer remote sensing dataset for the elements Fe, Ti and Th. The approach has been validated using Apollo and Luna bulk regolith samples and we have applied it to 48 meteorites excluding paired stones. Our approach is able broadly to differentiate the best compositional matches as potential regions of origin for the various classes of lunar meteorites. Basaltic and intermediate-Fe regolith breccia meteorites are found to have the best constrained potential launch sites, with some impact breccias and pristine mare basalts also having reasonably well defined potential source regions. Launch areas for highland feldspathic meteorites are much less well constrained and the addition of another element, such as Mg, will probably be required to identify potential source regions for these.


    Item Type: Article
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): Lunar meteorites, Lunar petrology, Lunar Prospector
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Science > School of Natural Sciences
    Depositing User: Professor Ian A. Crawford
    Date Deposited: 05 Mar 2015 08:00
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 17:15


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