The 10 micron spectra of comets Halley (1982i), Wilson (1986l), Kohoutek (1973f) and Bradfield (1987s) are presented and compared. The silicate emission profiles of Halley and Bradfield are seen to be remarkably similar in that both contain a sharp break in the spectrum at 11.3 microns. Comet Bradfield does not show the same double peak structure seen in olivine and reported in Comet Halley be Campins and Ryan (1988) and Bregman, et al. (1987). The authors interpret the 11.3 micron signature as being due to olivine-type dust grains with at least some degree of crystallinity. Olivine alone is not enough to reproduce the shape of the 10 micron structure. However, in view of the authors' past success in fitting interstellar dust features with the emissivity profile obtained from amorphous grains produced by laser-vaporizing olivine, this is a very appealing identification. They note that there are significant variations in olivine spectra due to compositional differences, grain size distribution and related grain temperature variations to make the olivine identification tentative. They further tentatively identify the 9.8 micron feature in Halley as being due to either amorphorous olivine or a phyllosilicate (layer lattice). Neither the spectra of Halley, Kohoutek, nor Bradfield exhibited the 12.2 micron feature seen in Comet Wilson, which may prove diagnostic of the composition or thermal history differences between these comets. IR spectra of various mineral samples are discussed in terms of their match to cometary spectra.
NASA, Ames Research Center, Interstellar Dust: Contributed Papers; p 417-422