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  • 1
    Publication Date: 2013-08-31
    Description: The Earth's magnetic field can be subdivided into core and crustal components and we seek to characterize the crustal part through its spatial power spectrum (R(sub l)). We process vector Magsat data to isolate the crustal field and then invert power spectral densities of flight-local components along-track for R(sub l) following O'Brien et al. [1999]. Our model (LPPC) is accurate up to approximately degree 45 (lambda=900 km) - this is the resolution limit of our data and suggests that global crustal anomaly maps constructed from vector Magsat data should not contain features with wavelengths less than 900 km. We find continental power spectra to be greater than oceanic ones and attribute this to the relative thicknesses of continental and oceanic crust.
    Keywords: Geophysics
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  • 2
    Publication Date: 2019-07-19
    Description: On 18 March 2011, the MErcury Surface, Space ENvironment, GEochemistry, and Ranging (MESSENGER) spacecraft was inserted into a 12-hour, near-polar orbit around Mercury, with an initial periapsis altitude of 200 km, initial periapse latitude of 60 deg N, and apoapsis at approximately 15,200 km altitude in the southern hemisphere. This orbit has permitted the mapping of regional gravitational structure in the northern hemisphere, and laser altimetry from the MESSENGER spacecraft has yielded a geodetically controlled elevation model for the same hemisphere. The shape of a planet combined with gravity provides fundamental information regarding its internal structure and geologic and thermal evolution. Elevations in the northern hemisphere exhibit a unimodal distribution with a dynamic range of 9.63 km, less than that of the Moon (19.9 km), but consistent with Mercury's higher surface gravitational acceleration. After one Earth-year in orbit, refined models of gravity and topography have revealed several large positive gravity anomalies that coincide with major impact basins. These candidate mascons have anomalies that exceed 100 mGal and indicate substantial crustal thinning and superisostatic uplift of underlying mantle. An additional uncompensated 1000-km-diameter gravity and topographic high at 68 deg N, 33 deg E lies within Mercury's northern volcanic plains. Mercury's northern hemisphere crust is generally thicker at low latitudes than in the polar region. The low-degree gravity field, combined with planetary spin parameters, yields the moment of inertia C/MR2 = 0.353 +/- 0.017, where M=3.30 x 10(exp 23) kg and R=2440 km are Mercury's mass and radius, and a ratio of the moment of inertia of Mercury's solid outer shell to that of the planet of Cm/C = 0.452 +/- 0.035. One proposed model for Mercury's radial density distribution consistent with these results includes silicate crust and mantle layers overlying a dense solid (possibly Fe-S) layer, a liquid Fe-rich outer core of radius 2030 +/- 37 km, and an assumed solid inner core. Magnetic field measurements indicate a northward offset of Mercury's axial magnetic dipole from the geographic equator by 479 +/-3 km and provide evidence for a regional-scale magnetic field approximately collocated with the northern volcanic plains of possible crustal origin. These results from MESSENGER indicate a complex and asymmetric evolution of internal structure and dynamics in this end-member inner planet.
    Keywords: Lunar and Planetary Science and Exploration
    Type: GSFC.ABS.00410.2012 , 39th COSPAR Scientific Assembly 2012; Jul 14, 2012 - Jul 22, 2012; Mysore; India
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  • 3
    Publication Date: 2019-07-19
    Description: Both magnetic and seismic techniques can provide information about the Moho (Mohorovicic discontinuity). We develop a new technique that provides a better estimate of the magnetic thickness of the crust, as compared with previous approaches. It uses prior knowledge from seismology (Crust 1.0), a new high-degree model from CHAMP (CHAllenging Mini-satellite Payload) and Swarm (LCS-1 - a model of Earth's lithospheric field) and a newly developed technique. The technique is appropriate for regions where induced magnetization dominates over remanent magnetization. We compare the predictions from LCS-1 with those from Crust 1.0, with some simple assumptions, and find that the correlations increase until about spherical harmonic degree 30, and then decrease globally. Spatially, the correlations between the seismic and magnetic techniques are strongest over North America and Australia, and weakest over South America and northern Africa. Strong correlations also exist between the two approaches over the Antarctic, northern Europe, and Greenland. While we might expect the seismic and magnetic approaches to correlate over well-characterized regions (i.e. North America), and show weaker correlations over poorly-characterized regions (i.e. South America and north Africa), the strong correlation in the Antarctic and Greenland is puzzling, because both of these regions are poorly-characterized. We discuss some possible explanations, and implications, of this attempt to correlate seismic and magnetic approaches to characterizing the lithosphere.
    Keywords: Geophysics
    Type: GSFC 0176-143 , GSFC-E-DAA-TN60131
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  • 4
    Publication Date: 2019-08-26
    Description: The MESSENGER spacecraft flyby of Mercury on 14 January 2008 provided a new opportunity to study the intrinsic magnetic field of the innermost planet and its interaction with the solar wind, The model presented in this paper is based on the solution of the three-dimensional, bi-f1uid equations for solar wind protons and electrons in the absence of mass loading, In this study we provide new estimates of Mercury's intrinsic magnetic field and the solar wind conditions that prevailed at the time of the flyby. We show that the location of the boundary layers and the strength of the magnetic field along the spacecraft trajectory can be reproduced with a solar wind ram pressure P(sub sw) = 6.8 nPa and a planetary magnetic dipole having a magnitude of 210 R(sub M)(exp 3)- nT and an offset of 0.18 R(sub M) to the north of the equator, where R(sub M) is Mercury's radius. Analysis of the plasma flow reveals the existence of a stable drift belt around the planet; such a belt can account for the locations of diamagnetic decreases observed by the MESSENGER Magnetometer. Moreover, we determine that the ion impact rate at the n011hern cusp was four times higher than at the southern cusp, a result that provides a possible explanation for the observed north-south asymmetry in exospheric sodium in the neutral tail.
    Keywords: Lunar and Planetary Science and Exploration
    Type: GSFC.JA.4602.2011 , Icarus (ISSN 0019-1035); 209; 3-10
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  • 5
    Publication Date: 2019-07-12
    Description: A new magnetic map of the Moon, based on Lunar Prospector (LP) magnetometer observations, sheds light on the origin of the South Pole-Aitken Basin (SPA), the largest and oldest of the recognized lunar basins. A set of WNW-trending linear to arcuate magnetic features, evident in both the radial and scalar observations, covers much of a 1000 km wide region centered on the NW portion of SPA. The source bodies are not at the surface because the magnetic features show no first-order correspondence to any surface topographic or structural feature. Patchy mare basalts of possible late Imbrianage are emplaced within SPA and are inferred to have been emplaced through dikes, directly from mantle sources. We infer that the magnetic features represent dike swarms that served as feeders for these mare basalts, as evident from the location of the Thomson/ Mare Ingenii, Van de Graaff, and Leeuwenhoek mare basalts on the two largest magnetic features in the region. Modeling suggests that the dike zone is between 25 and 50 km wide at the surface, and dike magnetization contrasts are in the range of 0.2 A/m. We theorize that the basaltic dikes were emplaced in the lunar crust when a long-lived dynamo was active. Based on pressure, temperature, and stress conditions prevalent in the lunar crust, dikes are expected to be a dominantly subsurface phenomenon, consistent with the observations reported here.
    Keywords: Lunar and Planetary Science and Exploration
    Type: GSFC-E-DAA-TN9232
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  • 6
    Publication Date: 2019-07-13
    Description: The structure of Mercury's internal magnetic field has been determined from analysis of orbital Magnetometer measurements by the MESSENGER spacecraft. We identified the magnetic equator on 531 low-altitude and 120 high-altitude equator crossings from the zero in the radial cylindrical magnetic field component, Beta (sub rho). The low-altitude crossings are offset 479 +/- 6 km northward, indicating an offset of the planetary dipole. The tilt of the magnetic pole relative to the planetary spin axis is less than 0.8 deg.. The high-altitude crossings yield a northward offset of the magnetic equator of 486 +/- 74 km. A field with only nonzero dipole and octupole coefficients also matches the low-altitude observations but cannot yield off-equatorial Beta (sub rho) = 0 at radial distances greater than 3520 km. We compared offset dipole and other descriptions of the field with vector field observations below 600 km for 13 longitudinally distributed, magnetically quiet orbits. An offset dipole with southward directed moment of 190 nT-R-cube (sub M) yields root-mean-square (RMS) residuals below 14 nT, whereas a field with only dipole and octupole terms tuned to match the polar field and the low-altitude magnetic equator crossings yields RMS residuals up to 68 nT. Attributing the residuals from the offset-dipole field to axial degree 3 and 4 contributions we estimate that the Gauss coefficient magnitudes for the additional terms are less than 4% and 7%, respectively, relative to the dipole. The axial alignment and prominent quadrupole are consistent with a non-convecting layer above a deep dynamo in Mercury's fluid outer core.
    Keywords: Lunar and Planetary Science and Exploration
    Type: GSFC-E-DAA-TN9344 , Journal of Geophysical Research Planets (ISSN 0148-0227); 117; E12; E00L12
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  • 7
    Publication Date: 2019-07-13
    Description: This paper summarizes recent advances in our understanding of geomagnetism, and its relevance to terrestrial space weather. It also discusses specific core magnetic field features such as the dipole moment decay, the evolution of the South Atlantic anomaly, and the location of the magnetic poles that are of importance for the practice of space weather.
    Keywords: Geophysics
    Type: GSFC-E-DAA-TN50805 , Space Science Review (ISSN 0038-6308) (e-ISSN 1572-9672); 214; 11
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  • 8
    Publication Date: 2019-07-02
    Description: While devoid of an active magnetic dynamo field today, Mars possesses a remanent magnetic field that may reach several thousand nanoteslas locally. The exact origin and the events that have shaped the crustal magnetization remain largely enigmatic. Three magnetic field data sets from two spacecraft collected over 13 cumulative years have sampled the Martian magnetic field over a range of altitudes from 90 up to 6,000 km: (a) Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) magnetometer (19972006), (b) MGS Electron Reflectometer (19992006), and (c) Mars Atmosphere and Volatile EvolutioN (MAVEN) magnetometer (2014 to today). In this paper we combine these complementary data sets for the first time to build a new model of the Martian internal magnetic field. This new model improves upon previous ones in several aspects: comprehensive data coverage, refined data selection scheme, modified modeling scheme, discrete-to-continuous transformation of the model, and increased model resolution. The new model has a spatial resolution of 160 km at the surface, corresponding to spherical harmonic degree 134. It shows small scales and well-defined features, which can now be associated with geological signatures.
    Keywords: Lunar and Planetary Science and Exploration
    Type: GSFC-E-DAA-TN70068 , Journal of Geophysical Research: Planets
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  • 9
    Publication Date: 2012-04-01
    Print ISSN: 0094-8276
    Electronic ISSN: 1944-8007
    Topics: Geosciences , Physics
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  • 10
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