The Surface Composition of Ceres’ Ezinu quadrangle analyzed by the Dawn mission

1Jean-Philippe Combe et al. (>10)
Icarus (in Press) Link to Article [https://doi.org/10.1016/j.icarus.2017.12.039]
1Bear Fight Institute, 22 Fiddler’s Road, P.O. Box 667, Winthrop, WA 98862, USA
Copyright Elsevier

We studied the surface composition of Ceres within the limits of the Ezinu quadrangle in the ranges 180 – 270°E and 21 – 66°N by analyzing data from Dawn’s visible and near-infrared data from the Visible and InfraRed mapping spectrometer and from multispectral images from the Framing Camera. Our analysis includes the distribution of hydroxylated minerals, ammoniated phyllosilicates, carbonates, the search for organic materials and the characterization of physical properties of the regolith. The surface of this quadrangle is largely homogenous, except for small, high-albedo carbonate-rich areas, and one zone on dark, lobate materials on the floor of Occator, which constitute the main topics of investigation. 1) Carbonate-rich surface compositions are associated with H2O ice rich crust. Weaker absorption bands of hydroxylated and ammoniated minerals over the carbonate-rich areas can be explained by higher abundances of carbonates at the topmost surface. 2) Dark, smooth lobate materials at the foot of Occator’s northeastern wall possibly reveal fresh slumping of phyllosilicate-rich materials with fine grain size, or local enrichment in carbon-rich materials such as tholins. 3) The deeper absorption band depth of OH and NH4, on the rim of several impact craters, is one observation that is consistent with a stratification of the phyllosilicate abundance that has been inferred previously from global investigations.

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