Strength, Depth, and Geometry of Magnetic Sources in the Crust of the Moon From Localized Power Spectrum Analysis
Spacecraft observations show that weak magnetic fields of crustal origin are ubiquitous across the surface of the Moon. To investigate the origin of these magnetic anomalies, a model was developed for the magnetic power spectrum that consists of ensembles of randomly magnetized sills or prisms. Localized spectrum analyses constrained how the parameters of this model vary with position, including the size of the sources, a quantity proportional to their mean-squared dipole moment, and the depth to the top and bottom of the magnetized region. The depth to the top of the magnetized region varies from the surface to about 25 km. The magnetic carriers in the deep crust likely formed at the same time as the crust itself, implying that a core-generated dynamo field must have existed when the crust was cooling during the first 100 Myr of lunar evolution. The parameter related to the strength of magnetization shows the existence of a prominent region on the nearside hemisphere that is largely unmagnetized and that correlates with a region of extremely low surface field strengths. This region lies entirely within a geological province that is highly enriched in heat-producing elements (the Procellarum KREEP Terrane), suggesting that this region escaped being magnetized because of prolonged high crustal temperatures. The nearside magnetic low may be representative of the size of that portion of the crust that is highly enriched in heat-producing elements, which is almost one third the size of the Procellarum KREEP Terrane based on surface thorium abundances.