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Lunar magma ocean and its implication for origin of the MoonA plausible accretional model of the Moon using as a constraint the formation of a magma ocean is discussed. Recently, it was shown that the surface of a planet growing by planetestimal impacts was heated over the melting temperature of surface materials due to the blanketing effect of an impact induced atmosphere. Using the same calculational scheme for the Earth, the early thermal history of the Moon growing by planetestimal impacts can be calculated for various accretional models. It is shown that a magma ocean covering the entire surface was formed in both models. Most important parameters related to surface temperature are safronov number and accretion time. Results show that a very small safronov number is needed for formation of the magma ocean. Safronov number is usually larger than 1 for accretion of planetestimals in heliocentric orbit. However, safronov number decreases when the Moon's growth is dominated by the proximity of the Earth. According to Harris, safronov number falls in the range of 0.02-0.1 for the binary accretion case. Therefore, it is suggested that the Moon was formed by accretion of planetestimals in geocentric orbits.
Document ID
Document Type
Conference Paper
Matsui, T. (Tokyo Univ.)
Abe, Y. (Tokyo Univ.)
Date Acquired
August 12, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 1984
Publication Information
Publication: Lunar Planetary Inst. Conf. on the Origin of the Moon
Subject Category
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.

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IDRelationTitle19850005400Analytic PrimaryConference on the Origin of the Moon