Ina lunar irregular mare patch mission concepts:Distinguishing between ancient and modern volcanism models

Qiao, L. and Head, J.W. and Wilson, L. and Ling, Z. (2021) Ina lunar irregular mare patch mission concepts:Distinguishing between ancient and modern volcanism models. The Planetary Science Journal, 2 (2).

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Abstract

The Ina irregular mare patch, an ∼2 × 3 km summit depression on an ancient ∼22 km diameter shield volcano, displays two very enigmatic units: (1) dozens of dark convex-upward mounds and (2) a very rough, optically immature floor unit with very sharp morphologic contacts between the two. Controversy surrounds the age interpretation of Ina; superposed impact crater size–frequency distributions (CSFDs) suggest an age of ∼33 Ma, consistent with the presence of sharp contacts between the units and indicating that mare volcanism continues to today. Models of the terminal stages of volcano summit pit crater activity suggest an age coincident with the building of the shield, ∼3.5 Ga; these models interpret the CSFD age and sharp contacts to be due to an extremely porous lava lake floor and extrusion and solidification of magmatic foams. We present robotic–human exploration mission concepts designed to resolve this critical issue for lunar thermal evolution.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
The Planetary Science Journal
ID Code:
160024
Deposited By:
Deposited On:
05 Oct 2021 13:55
Refereed?:
Yes
Published?:
Published
Last Modified:
01 Dec 2021 13:26