Skip to main content

Interaction of energetic particles and dust grains with asteroidal surfaces

Abstract

Low energy solar wind (SW) and solar energetic particles (SEP) interact with material exposed on the surface of planetary objects devoid of an atmosphere and a global magnetic field such as the Moon and the asteroids. Micrometeoroid impacts will produce microcraters on samples exposed on the surfaces of these bodies and also cause microscale erosion and at times catastrophic rupture of the target rocks and soil grains. The impacting flux of meteoroids thus controls the effective SW and SEP exposure durations of samples on the lunar and asteroidal surfaces. The lunar samples contain abundant records of energetic particle interactions and micrometeoroid impacts while such records found in gas-rich meteorites can be considered to be representative of asteroidal samples. These records allow us to infer the composition and intensity of SW and SEP in the past as well as surface dynamical processes operating on the Moon and asteroids at different epochs. However, unlike the lunar records that span the time interval from the present to several billion years in the past, the asteroidal (gas-rich meteorite) records provide information only for some distant epochs in the past. We do not have much information about the contemporary energetic particle and dust grain environment in the asteroidal region. The Muses-C mission, that will bring back near surface samples from an asteroid, will be extremely important in this regard.

References

  1. Ashworth, D. G., Lunar and planetary impact erosion, in Cosmic Dust, edited by J. A. M. McDonnell, pp. 427–526, Wiley-Interscience Publication, 1978.

  2. Asphaug, E., J. M. Moore, D. Morrison, W. Benz, M. C. Nolan, and R. Sullivan, Mechanical and geological effects of impact cratering on Ida, Icarus, 120, 158–184, 1996.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  3. Biswas, S., N. Durgaprasad, B. Mitra, and A. Dutta, Anuradha and low energy cosmic rays, Space Sci. Rev., 62, 3–65, 1993.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  4. Brownlee, D. E., Cosmic dust: Collection and research, Ann. Rev. Earth Planet. Sci., 13, 147–173, 1985.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  5. Brownlee, D. E. and R. S. Rajan, Micrometeorite craters discovered on chondrule like objects from Kapoeta meteorite, Science, 182, 1341–1344, 1973.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  6. Caffee, M. W. and J. D. Macdougall, Compaction ages, in Metorites and the Early Solar System, edited by J. F. Kerridge and M. S. Matthews, pp. 289–298, Arizona Univ. Press, Tucson, 1988.

    Google Scholar 

  7. Caffee, M. W., J. N. Goswami, C. M. Hohenberg, K. Marti, and R. C. Reedy, Irradiation records in meteorites, in Metorites and the Early Solar System, edited by J. F. Kerridge and M. S. Matthews, pp. 205–245, Arizona Univ. Press, Tucson, 1988.

    Google Scholar 

  8. Caffee, M. W., C. M. Hohenberg, R. H. Nichols, Jr., C. T. Olinger, R. Wieler, A. Pedroni, P. Signer, T. D. Swindle, and J. N. Goswami, Do meteorites contain irradiation records from exposure to an enhanced-activity Sun?, in The Sun in Time, edited by C. P. Sonett, M. S. Giampapa, and M. S. Matthews, pp. 413–425, Arizona Univ. Press, Tucson, 1991.

    Google Scholar 

  9. Carr, M. H., R. L. Kirk, A. McEwen, J. Veverka, P. Thomas, J. W. Head, and S. Murchie, The geology of Gaspra, Icarus, 107, 61–71, 1994.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  10. Dohnanyi, J. S., Sources of interplanetary dust: asteroids, in Lecture Notes in Physics, 48, edited by H. Elsasser and H. Fechtig, p. 143, Springer-Verlag, 1976.

  11. Feigelson, E. D., M. S. Giampapa, and F. J. Vrba, Magnetic activity in pre-main-sequence stars, in The Sun in Time, edited by C. P. Sonett, M. S. Giampapa, and M. S. Matthews, pp. 658–681, Arizona Univ. Press, Tucson, 1991.

    Google Scholar 

  12. Fleischer, R. L., P. B. Price, and R. M. Walker, Nuclear Tracks in Solids, 605 pp., Univ. of California Press, Berkeley, 1975.

    Google Scholar 

  13. Gault, D. E., F., Horz, and J. B. Hartung, Effects of microcratering on the lunar surface, Proc. 3rd Lunar Sci. Conf., 3, 2713, 1972.

    Google Scholar 

  14. Gault, D. E., F. Horz, D. E. Brownlee, and J. B. Hartung, Mixing of the lunar regolith, Proc. 5th Lunar Sci. Conf., 2365, 1974.

  15. Geiss, J. and P. Bochsler, Long-time variations in solar wind properties: Possible causes versus observations, in The Sun in Time, edited by C. P. Sonett, M. S. Giampapa, and M. S. Matthews, pp. 98–117, Arizona Univ. Press, Tucson, 1991.

    Google Scholar 

  16. Goswami, J. N., Solar flare heavy ion tracks in extraterrestrial objects, in The Sun in Time, edited by C. P. Sonett, M. S. Giampapa, and M. S. Matthews, pp. 426–444, Arizona Univ. Press, Tucson, 1991.

    Google Scholar 

  17. Goswami, J. N., I. D. Hutcheon, and J. D. Macdougall, Microcraters and solar flare tracks in crystals from carbonaceous chondrites and lunar breccias, Proc. Lunar Sci. Conf. 7th, 543–562, 1976.

  18. Goswami, J. N., D. Lal, and L. L. Wilkening, Gas-rich meteorites: Probes for particle environment and dynamical processes in the inner solar system, Space Sci. Rev., 37, 111–159, 1984.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  19. Grun, E., H. A. Zook, H. Fechtig, and R. H. Giese, Collisional balance of the meteoritic complex, Icarus, 62, 244–272, 1985.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  20. Hohenberg, C. M., R. H. Nichols, Jr., C. T. Olinger, and J. N. Goswami, Cosmogenic neon form individual grains of CM meteorites: Extremely long pre-compaction exposure histories or an enhanced early particle flux, Geochim. Cosmochim Acta, 54, 2133–2140, 1990.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  21. Housen, K. R. and L. L. Wilkening, Regoliths on small bodies in the solar system, Ann. Rev. Earth Planet. Sci., 10, 355–376, 1982.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  22. Housen, K. R., L. L. Wilkening, C. R. Chapman, and R. Greenberg, Asteroidal regoliths, Icarus, 39, 317–351, 1979.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  23. Housen, K. R., R. M. Schmidt, and K. A. Holsapple, Crater ejecta scaling laws: Fundamental forms based on dimensional analysis, J. Geophys. Res., 88, 2485–2499, 1983.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  24. Hughes, D. W., Meteors, in Cosmic Dust, edited by J. A. M. McDonnell, pp. 123–185, Wiley-Interscience Publication, 1978.

  25. Kerridge, J. F., P. Signer, R. Wieler, R. H. Becker, and R. O. Pepin, Long-term changes in composition of solar particles implanted in extraterrestrial materials, in The Sun in Time, edited by C. P. Sonett, M. S. Giampapa, and M. S. Matthews, pp. 389–412, Arizona Univ. Press, Tucson, 1991.

    Google Scholar 

  26. Klecker, B., R. A. Mewaldt et al., Anomalous cosmic rays, Space Sci. Rev., 83, 259–308, 1998.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  27. Lal, D., Hard rock cosmic ray archaeology, Space Sci. Rev., 14, 3–102, 1972.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  28. Langevin, Y. and M. Maurette, A model for small body regolith evolution: The critical parameters, Lunar Planet. Sci., XI, 602–604, 1980.

    Google Scholar 

  29. McDonnell, J. A. M., Microparticle studies by space instrumentation, in Cosmic Dust, edited by J. A. M. McDonnell, pp. 337–426, Wiley-Interscience Publication, 1978.

  30. Michikami, T., Evolution of asteroid regolith layers by cratering, Ph.D. thesis, University of Tokyo, Japan, 2001.

    Google Scholar 

  31. Morrison, D. A. and E. Zinner, Distribution and flux of micrometeoroids, Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc. A, 285, 379, 1976.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  32. Morrison, D. A. and E. Zinner, 12054 and 76215: New measurements of interplanetary dust and solar flare fluxes, Proc. Lunar Sci. Conf. 8th, 841–863, 1977.

  33. Reedy, R. C., Studies of modern and ancient solar energetic particles, Proc. Indian Acad. Sci. (Earth Planet. Sci.), 107, 433–440, 1998.

    Google Scholar 

  34. Reedy, R. C., J. R. Arnold, and D. Lal, Cosmic ray records in solar system matter, Science, 219, 127–135, 1983.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  35. Sullivan, R., R. Greeley, R. Pappalardo, E. Asphaug, J. M. Moore, D. Morrison, M. J. S. Belton, M. Carr, C. R. Chapman, P. Geissler, R. Greenberg, J. Granahan, J. W. Head, III, R. Kirk, A. McEwen, P. Lee, P. C. Thomas, and J. Veverka, Geology of 243 Ida, Icarus, 120, 119–139, 1996.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  36. Thomas, P. C., J. Veverka, R. Sullivan, D. P. Simonelli, M. C. Malin, M. Caplinger, W. K. Hartmann, and P. B. James, Phobos: Regolith and ejecta blocks investigated with Mars Orbiter Camera images, J. Geophys. Res., 105, 15091–15106, 2000.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  37. Veverka, J., P. Thomas, A. Harch, B. Clark, J. F. Bell, III, B. Carcich, J. Joseph, C. Chapman, W. Merline, M. Robinson, M. Malin, L. A. McFadden, S. Murchie, S. E. Hawkins, III, R. Farquhar, N. Izenberg, and A. Cheng, NEAR’s flyby of 253 Mathilde: Images of a C asteroid, Science, 278, 2109–2114, 1997.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  38. Veverka, J., P. C. Thomas, M. Robinson, S. Murchie, C. Chapman, M. Bell, A. Harch, W. J. Merline, III, B. Bussey, B. Carcich, A. Cheng, B. Clark, D. Domingue, D. Dunham, R. Farquhar, M. J. Gaffey, E. Hawkins, N. Izenberg, J. Joseph, R. Kirk, H. Li, P. Lucey, M. Malin, L. McFadden, J. K. Miller, W. M. Owen, Jr., C. Peterson, L. Prockter, J. Warren, D. Wellnitz, B. G. Williams, and D. K. Yeomans, Imaging of small-scale features on 433 Eros from NEAR: Evidence for a complex regolith, Science, 292, 484–488, 2001.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  39. Weinberg, J. L. and J. G. Sparrow, Zodiacal light as an indicator of interplanetary dust, in Cosmic Dust, edited by J. A. M. McDonnell, pp. 75–122, Wiley-Interscience Publication, 1978.

  40. Wieler, R., The solar noble gas record in lunar samples and meteorites, Space Sci. Rev., 85, 303–314, 1998.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  41. Wieler, R., H. Baur, and P. Signer, Noble gases from solar energetic particles revealed by closed system stepwise etching of lunar soil minerals, Geochim. Cosmochim. Acta, 50, 1997–2017, 1986.

    Article  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to J N Goswami.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Goswami, J.N. Interaction of energetic particles and dust grains with asteroidal surfaces. Earth Planet Sp 53, 1029–1037 (2001). https://doi.org/10.1186/BF03351701

Download citation

Keywords

  • Solar Wind
  • Energetic Particle
  • Solar Energetic Particle
  • Carbonaceous Chondrite
  • Lunar Regolith