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The last major phase of lunar volcanism produced extensive high-titanium mare deposits on the western nearside which remain unsampled by landing missions. The visible and near-infrared reflectance properties of these basalts are examined using Clementine multispectral images to better constrain their mineralogy. A much stronger 1 ??m ferrous absorption was observed for the western high-titanium basalts than within earlier maria, suggesting that these last major mare eruptions also may have been the most iron-rich. These western basalts also have a distinctly long-wavelength, 1 ??m ferrous absorption which was found to be similar for both surface soils and materials excavated from depth, supporting the interpretation of abundant olivine within these deposits. Spectral variation along flows within the Imbrium basin also suggests variations in ilmenite content along previously mapped lava flows as well as increasing olivine content within subsequent eruptions. Copyright 2001 by the American Geophysical Union.
Additional Publication Details
Mineralogy of the last lunar basalts: Results from Clementine