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Ge abundances in the lunar mantle and implications for the origin of the MoonRegardless of the origin of the Moon, metal segregation must have occurred within the moon in order to account for its low siderophile element abundances relative to the Earth or chondrites. Germanium is a strongly siderophile element whose bulk distribution coefficient indicates that it is not fractionated during igneous processes on the Moon. The variability in absolute Ge abundances in mare basalts and pristine highland rocks, rather than elemental ratios, can be used to infer lunar mantle abundances and processes. Literature data have been compiled for Ge abundances in mare basalts and pristine highland rocks. For some landing sites, samples with 12 ppb Ge were considered to be extreme outliers and are not included. The Apollo 15 samples are enriched in Ge by a factor of 2.5 over the Apollo 12, 16 and 17 samples. Other siderophile element variations have been found in the Moon. Based on this data, best estimate of the average Ge abundance in the silicate portion of the Moon is 3.52 ppb. The Moon is depleted, relative to chondritic abundances, by a factor of 38,000 normalized to Si. Two possible explanations for the observed variations in Ge abundance in the Moon are: (1) more metal may have segregated from some regions of the Moon than from others; or Ge-bearing material may been been added later in the evolution of the Moon.
Document ID
Document Type
Conference Paper
Dickinson, T. (New Mexico Univ. Albuquerque, NM, United States)
Newsom, H. (New Mexico Univ. Albuquerque, NM, United States)
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