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The origin of the MoonBulk density alone shows that the Moon is depleted in metallic FeNi relative to the Earth or to chondritic meteorites. This depletion implies that the Moon formed not from chondrites but from differentiated material. Origin of the Moon by fission from the Earth offers a simple explanation for its depletion in FeNi, but this mechanism seems unlikely because of associated dynamical difficulties. Lunar volatile element depletions were invoked in support of fission, but volatile contents of eucritic meteorites are similarly low and the eucrites did not form by Earth fission. A more plausible origin of the Moon is accretion from the circumterrestrial swarm. The low FeNi content of the Moon is understood if the mean size of interplanetary silicate particles was much smaller than that for metal particles, since this would have led to preferential capture of silicates into Earth orbit, but the question arises whether the mean particle size of the metallic particles was great enough to prevent their capture into the swarm.
Document ID
Document Type
Conference Paper
Wasson, J. T. (California Univ. Los Angeles, CA, United States)
Warren, P. H. (California Univ. Los Angeles, CA, 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