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Large impact basins on Mercury: Global distribution, characteristics, and modification history from MESSENGER orbital data

Fassett, Caleb I. and Head, James W. and Baker, David M. H. and Zuber, Maria T. and Smith, David E. and Neumann, Gregory A. and Solomon, Sean C. and Klimczak, Christian and Strom, Robert G. and Chapman, Clark R. and Prockter, Louise M. and Phillips, Roger J. and Oberst, Jürgen and Preusker, Frank (2012) Large impact basins on Mercury: Global distribution, characteristics, and modification history from MESSENGER orbital data. Journal of Geophysical Research, 117 (E10). Wiley. DOI: 10.1029/2012JE004154

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Official URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1029/2012JE004154/abstract

Abstract

The formation of large impact basins (diameter D ≥ 300 km) was an important process in the early geological evolution of Mercury and influenced the planet's topography, stratigraphy, and crustal structure. We catalog and characterize this basin population on Mercury from global observations by the MESSENGER spacecraft, and we use the new data to evaluate basins suggested on the basis of the Mariner 10 flybys. Forty-six certain or probable impact basins are recognized; a few additional basins that may have been degraded to the point of ambiguity are plausible on the basis of new data but are classified as uncertain. The spatial density of large basins (D ≥ 500 km) on Mercury is lower than that on the Moon. Morphological characteristics of basins on Mercury suggest that on average they are more degraded than lunar basins. These observations are consistent with more efficient modification, degradation, and obliteration of the largest basins on Mercury than on the Moon. This distinction may be a result of differences in the basin formation process (producing fewer rings), relaxation of topography after basin formation (subduing relief), or rates of volcanism (burying basin rings and interiors) during the period of heavy bombardment on Mercury from those on the Moon.

Item URL in elib:https://elib.dlr.de/80736/
Document Type:Article
Title:Large impact basins on Mercury: Global distribution, characteristics, and modification history from MESSENGER orbital data
Authors:
AuthorsInstitution or Email of AuthorsAuthors ORCID iD
Fassett, Caleb I.Department of Astronomy, Mount Holyoke College, South Hadley, Massachusetts, USAUNSPECIFIED
Head, James W.Department of Geological Sciences, Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island, USAUNSPECIFIED
Baker, David M. H.Department of Geological Sciences, Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island, USAUNSPECIFIED
Zuber, Maria T.Department of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USAUNSPECIFIED
Smith, David E.NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland, USAUNSPECIFIED
Neumann, Gregory A.NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland, USAUNSPECIFIED
Solomon, Sean C.Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Columbia University, Palisades, New York, USAUNSPECIFIED
Klimczak, ChristianDepartment of Terrestrial Magnetism, Carnegie Institution of Washington, Washington, DC, USAUNSPECIFIED
Strom, Robert G.Lunar and Planetary Laboratory, University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona, USAUNSPECIFIED
Chapman, Clark R.Department of Space Sciences, Southwest Research Institute, Boulder, Colorado, USAUNSPECIFIED
Prockter, Louise M.The Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, Laurel, Maryland, USAUNSPECIFIED
Phillips, Roger J.Department of Space Sciences, Southwest Research Institute, Boulder, Colorado, USAUNSPECIFIED
Oberst, Jürgenjuergen.oberst (at) dlr.deUNSPECIFIED
Preusker, Frankfrank.preusker (at) dlr.deUNSPECIFIED
Date:October 2012
Journal or Publication Title:Journal of Geophysical Research
Refereed publication:Yes
Open Access:No
Gold Open Access:No
In SCOPUS:Yes
In ISI Web of Science:Yes
Volume:117
DOI :10.1029/2012JE004154
Publisher:Wiley
Status:Published
Keywords:Large impact basins on Mercury, MESSENGER orbital data
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport
HGF - Program:Space
HGF - Program Themes:Space Science and Exploration
DLR - Research area:Raumfahrt
DLR - Program:R EW - Erforschung des Weltraums
DLR - Research theme (Project):R - Vorhaben Exploration des Sonnensystems
Location: Berlin-Adlershof
Institutes and Institutions:Institute of Planetary Research > Planetary Geodesy
Deposited By: Beisembin, Bauyrzhan
Deposited On:18 Jan 2013 08:38
Last Modified:08 Mar 2018 18:44

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