Correlating Apollo soil mineralogical data with Kaguya spectral data for a global mineralogical classification

1Lingzhi Sun,1Paul G. Lucey,1G. Jeff Taylor
Journal of Geophysical Research (Planets) (in Press) Link to Article [https://doi.org/10.1029/2020JE006445]
1Hawai‘i Institute of Geophysics and Planetology, Dept. of Earth Sciences, University of Hawai‘i at Manoa, 1680 East‐West Rd., Honolulu, Hi, 96822 USA
Published by arrangement with >John Wiley & Sons

Although lunar soils contain rock and mineral components from the breakdown of a mixture of rock types, a classification based on the abundances of the major silicate minerals plagioclase, olivine, low‐Ca pyroxene (LCP) and high‐Ca pyroxene can be used to evaluate the major compositional classes that are represented within a given soil. We studied the compositional classes for Apollo 15, 16 and 17 soil samples based on the mineral modal abundances derived by X‐ray diffraction (XRD). Using the XRD results as a ground truth, we determined the compositional classes of the Apollo 15, 16 and 17 sampling stations using mineral maps from the Kaguya Multiband Imager (MI), then mapped areas having compositional classes similar to the sampling stations on regional and global scales. Global distribution of compositional classes was also mapped using MI mineral maps, and the major compositional classes of lunar nonmare surfaces are noritic anorthosite (40 %), anorthositic norite (24 %), and anorthosite (23 %). Our maps show that the lunar highlands and the South Pole‐Aitken (SPA) basin are enriched with noritic materials, indicating the widespread occurrence of LCP‐rich and olivine‐poor assemblages. In contrast to the SPA basin and the highlands, the basin rings of Serenitatis, Crisium, Humorum, Nectaris, Orientale and Hertzsprung exhibit higher olivine/pyroxene ratios (>2), and we interpret this signature as reflecting a contribution from olivine‐rich upper mantle components.

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