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Progress on Studies of Early Intense CrateringThe existence and effects of saturation cratering throughout the solar system was studied. It is found that saturation equilibrium cratering exists nowhere in the solar system, and that diameter distributions in even the most heavily cratered provinces reveal initial production functions related to impacting bodies. Different populations of impactors in different epochs and regions of the solar system are identified. The hypotheses are crucial for interpretation of planetary history. The crater counts on frontside lunar uplands, used as a basic reference curve identified with one of their populations of early impactors, are confirmed. This crater population is deficient in 1 to 16 km craters, which may be obliterated by the lavas. It is concluded that this curve is not representative of heavily cratered highlands, and is of questionable value as a standard comparison curve. The role of giant impacts during the intense early bombardment period was studied. Giant impact(s) on the primeval Earth may have initiated lunar formation.
Document ID
Acquisition Source
Legacy CDMS
Document Type
Hartmann, W. K.
(Planetary Science Inst. Tucson, AZ, United States)
Date Acquired
August 12, 2013
Publication Date
April 1, 1985
Publication Information
Publication: NASA, Washington Repts. of Planetary Geol. and Geophys. Program, 1984
Subject Category
Lunar And Planetary Exploration
Accession Number
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.
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