GSA Annual Meeting in Denver, Colorado, USA - 2016

Paper No. 242-2
Presentation Time: 9:00 AM-6:30 PM


GRABER, Andrew Paul, Wheaton College Geology Department, Wheaton College, 501 College Ave., Wheaton, IL 60187,

Previous work has shown that impact craters can be used to study stratigraphic relationships on planetary bodies like Mercury, the Moon, and Mars. The excavation and uplift that occur during impact events expose materials from a range of depths within in the crust depending on crater size. This study uses MESSENGER imagery to identify spectrally distinct ejecta and material within central peaks indicative of subsurface compositional differences within two regions of intercrater plains on Mercury. Supervised classifications were used to characterize these materials, and zonal statistics allowed the selection of craters above 40 km diameter in which spectrally distinct materials were present. The depths of origin for these materials were calculated based on published models of the depth of excavation and melting associated with the impact cratering process. The depths calculated were then used to interpolate raster surfaces estimating the minimum upper boundary for each of two subsurface stratigraphic layers. These preliminary results demonstrate the potential applications of the methodology developed in this study.
  • AndrewGraber_MercuryStratigraphyPoster.pdf (2.1 MB)