Relative cooling rates of mare basalts at the Apollo 12 and 15 sites as estimated from pyroxene exsolution data.
X-ray single-crystal diffraction studies, supplemented by electron microprobe analyses of core pigeonites and rim augites from rocks 12031, 15085, 15475, and 15495, have been used to suggest cooling rates for these and other Apollo 12 and 15 rocks studied by similar methods. The extent of subsolidus phase separation of pyroxenes is used as a measure of the cooling rate. The results were interpreted in terms of model cooling histories of a lava flow whose thickness was estimated from the absolute cooling rates obtained by cooling rate experiments and by temperature-time variation through an extrusive flow computed by employing simplified theory of Jaeger. All available data on the exsolution and cation distributions of pyroxenes from Apollo 12 and 15 samples at present are consistent with the hypothesis that these rocks were derived from the top and interior of lava flows with thicknesses of 4-10 m. A process for exsolution of augite from a host pigeonite on (100) has been related to its low-calcium content.
Lunar and Planetary Science Conference Proceedings
- Pub Date:
- Lunar Maria;
- Lunar Rocks;
- Apollo 12 Flight;
- Apollo 15 Flight;
- Electron Microscopy;
- Phase Separation (Materials);
- X Ray Diffraction;
- Lunar and Planetary Exploration