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Enceladus: An estimate of heat flux and lithospheric thickness from flexurally supported topography

Giese, Bernd and Wagner, Roland and Hussmann, Hauke and Neukum, Gerhard and Perry, Jason and Helfenstein, Paul and Thomas, Peter C. (2008) Enceladus: An estimate of heat flux and lithospheric thickness from flexurally supported topography. Geophysical Research Letters, 35 (L24204). doi: 10.1029/2008GL036149.

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Official URL: http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2008/2008GL036149.shtml


We have identified flexural uplift along a rift zone of the Harran Sulci, Enceladus, using Cassini images and stereo-derived topography. On the assumption that the upraised topography is related to a flexed elastic plate, shape modeling yields an effective lithospheric thickness of 0.3 km and, combined with the strength envelope, a mechanical lithospheric thickness of 2.5 km with heat fluxes of 200-270 mW/m2 at the time of formation. The heat fluxes are comparable to average heat flux values measured in Enceladus’ active south polar region, and they are consistent with estimates derived via models of unstable extension of the lithosphere at this location. Surface porosity can reduce the obtained heat fluxes to an estimated minimum of 45-60 mW/m2. Crater-size frequency counts fix the time of formation (from present-day) of the rift zone at either 3.5 Ga (assuming an asteroid-type impact chronology) or 0.45 Ga (assuming a comet-type impact chronology).

Item URL in elib:https://elib.dlr.de/56559/
Document Type:Article
Title:Enceladus: An estimate of heat flux and lithospheric thickness from flexurally supported topography
AuthorsInstitution or Email of AuthorsAuthor's ORCID iD
Neukum, GerhardFreie Universität Berlin, BerlinUNSPECIFIED
Perry, JasonUniversity of Arizona, Tucson, AZ (USA)UNSPECIFIED
Helfenstein, PaulCornell University, Ithaca, NY (USA)UNSPECIFIED
Thomas, Peter C.Cornell University, Ithaca, NY (USA)UNSPECIFIED
Date:December 2008
Journal or Publication Title:Geophysical Research Letters
Open Access:No
Gold Open Access:No
In ISI Web of Science:No
DOI :10.1029/2008GL036149
EditorsEmailEditor's ORCID iD
American Geophysical Union (AGU), UNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Keywords:Enceladus, Saturnian satellites, Heat flow, Lithosphere
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport (old)
HGF - Program:Space (old)
HGF - Program Themes:W EW - Erforschung des Weltraums
DLR - Research area:Space
DLR - Program:W EW - Erforschung des Weltraums
DLR - Research theme (Project):W - Vorhaben CASSINI (old)
Location: Berlin-Adlershof
Institutes and Institutions:Institute of Planetary Research
Deposited By: Giese, Dr.rer.nat. Bernd
Deposited On:26 Jan 2009
Last Modified:12 Dec 2013 20:34

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