Status Report

Geological Mapping and Chronology of Lunar Landing Sites: Apollo 11

By SpaceRef Editor
March 9, 2020
Filed under , ,

Wajiha Iqbal, Harald Hiesinger, Carolyn H. van der Bogert

(Submitted on 6 Mar 2020)

Crater size-frequency distribution (CSFDs) measurements allow the derivation of absolute model ages (AMAs) for geological units across various terrestrial bodies in the Solar System based on body-specific adjustments to the lunar chronology (e.g., Hartmann, 1970; Neukum et al., 1975, 1983, 2001; Stoeffler et al., 2001, 2006; Hiesinger et al., 2012; Robbins, 2014). Thus, it is important to revisit and test the accuracy of the lunar chronology using data from recent lunar missions (e.g., Hiesinger et al., 2000, 2012, 2015; Rajmon and Spudis, 2004; Stoeffler et al., 2006), as well as newer analyses of lunar samples (e.g., Gaffney et al. 2011, Meyer, 2012; Snape et al., 2016; Welsh et al., 2018). We generated a new detailed geological map of the Apollo 11 landing region based on spectral characteristics, topography, and albedo maps, which shows several mare units adjacent to the lunar module. Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera (LROC) images were used to measure new CSFDs and derive the cumulative number of craters with diameters greater than or equal to 1 km or N(1) for the Apollo 11 landing site. The newly derived N(1) values are consistent with the presence of only one surficial unit at the landing site: the Group A, High-K (high potassium) young mare basalt (Meyer, 2012). We reviewed the radiometric ages for Apollo 11 samples that have been determined since the calibration of the lunar cratering chronology, used our new geological map to reinterpret their provenance, and correlated them with the new N(1) values. These are plotted and compared with the lunar chronology of Neukum et al. (1983). Our calibration point for the Apollo 11 landing site is consistent with the earlier values, thus, confirming Neukum’s (1983) lunar chronology curve.

Subjects: Earth and Planetary Astrophysics (astro-ph.EP)

Journal reference: Icarus, 333, 2019, 528-547

DOI: 10.1016/j.icarus.2019.06.020

Cite as: arXiv:2003.03292 [astro-ph.EP] (or arXiv:2003.03292v1 [astro-ph.EP] for this version)

Submission history

From: Wajiha Iqbal 

[v1] Fri, 6 Mar 2020 15:54:33 UTC (3,554 KB)

SpaceRef staff editor.