...the who's who,
and the what's what 
of the space industry

Space Careers

news Space News

Search News Archive

Title

Article text

Keyword

  • Home
  • News
  • Impact-induced formation of microscopic magnetite first confirmed in Chang'E-5 lunar soil

Impact-induced formation of microscopic magnetite first confirmed in Chang'E-5 lunar soil

Written by  Tuesday, 06 December 2022 01:23
Write a comment
Beijing, China (SPX) Dec 06, 2022
A research team led by Prof. LI Yang and Dr. GUO Zhuang from the Institute of Geochemistry of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (IGCAS) conducted in-situ electron microanalysis of spherical iron-sulfide grains in the finest Chang'E-5 lunar soil and has confirmed the presence of impact-induced sub-microscopic magnetite. The study was published in Nature Communications on Nov. 23. Magnet

A research team led by Prof. LI Yang and Dr. GUO Zhuang from the Institute of Geochemistry of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (IGCAS) conducted in-situ electron microanalysis of spherical iron-sulfide grains in the finest Chang'E-5 lunar soil and has confirmed the presence of impact-induced sub-microscopic magnetite.

The study was published in Nature Communications on Nov. 23.

Magnetite is essential in planetary science when addressing questions concerning ancient magnetic fields and indicators of life. Traditionally, the Moon is considered to be extremely reduced. Thus, the oxidation state of the lunar surface points to the formation of metallic iron rather than iron oxides.

In the Apollo era, some studies deduced the presence of ubiquitous sub-microscopic magnetite-like phases in Apollo soils, but there was no further in-situ mineralogical evidence for the presence of widespread magnetite crystals in lunar soils.

In this study, magnetite-bearing spherical iron-sulfide grains ( Combining these observations with thermodynamic calculations, the researchers found that a gas-melt phase reaction occurred during large-impact events on the Moon, which allowed FeO dissolved into the iron sulfides to produce sub-microscopic magnetite and metallic iron through eutectic reaction (4FeO = Fe3O4 + Fe).

This first discovery of impact-induced sub-microscopic magnetite provides direct evidence that native magnetite may be widely distributed in the finest lunar soil.

Moreover, lunar magnetic anomalies have been a mystery since the Apollo era and their origin is still under debate. Previous studies only established the relationship between large impact ejecta and magnetic anomalies but did not focus on the transformation of material during impact.

"Our study observed another important ferromagnetic mineral (magnetite) formed by eutectic reaction during the impact processes on the Moon," said Prof. LI. "Due to the high magnetic susceptibilities of magnetite and metallic iron, the impact processes would greatly reduce the thickness requirements of lunar soil for lunar magnetic anomalies."

Therefore, impact-induced formation of magnetite in lunar samples also provides experimental verification and theoretical support for the explanation of magnetic anomalies on the Moon.

Research Report:Sub-microscopic magnetite and metallic iron particles formed by eutectic reaction in Chang'E-5 lunar soil


Related Links
Institute of Geochemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences
Mars News and Information at MarsDaily.com
Lunar Dreams and more

Tweet

Thanks for being here;
We need your help. The SpaceDaily news network continues to grow but revenues have never been harder to maintain.

With the rise of Ad Blockers, and Facebook - our traditional revenue sources via quality network advertising continues to decline. And unlike so many other news sites, we don't have a paywall - with those annoying usernames and passwords.

Our news coverage takes time and effort to publish 365 days a year.

If you find our news sites informative and useful then please consider becoming a regular supporter or for now make a one off contribution.

SpaceDaily Contributor
$5 Billed Once

credit card or paypal

SpaceDaily Monthly Supporter
$5 Billed Monthly

paypal only



MOON DAILY
NASA's Orion capsule performs burn to leave distant retrograde orbit
Washington DC (UPI) Dec 1, 2021
NASA's Orion space capsule, which is in day 16 of its Artemis I test flight, completed a burn Thursday to take it out of distant retrograde orbit. The burn, which was livestreamed by NASA, began about 4:53 p.m. EST and lasted for 1 minute, 45 seconds, and was successful. The procedure involved firing engines on the European service module which commits the spacecraft to leaving the lunar orbit to prepare for its return to Earth. Orion has been in distant retrograde orbit - an ell ... read more


Read more from original source...

You must login to post a comment.
Loading comment... The comment will be refreshed after 00:00.

Be the first to comment.

CONTACT THE AUTHOR

* Denotes Required Field
Personal information
Message

Interested in Space?

Hit the buttons below to follow us...