Earth, Moon, and Planets

, Volume 63, Issue 3, pp 227–243 | Cite as

Accessory phases in aubrites: spectral properties and implications for asteroid 44 Nysa

  • Edward A. Cloutis
  • Michael J. Gaffey


The reflectance spectra of meteoritic metal, meteoritic troilite and the CR carbonaceous chondrite EET87770 have been measured in order to investigate the causes of the spectral differences between the surface of the E-class asteroid 44 Nysa and the opaque free fraction of the Happy Canyon aubrite meteorite. The data indicate that the spectral differences require the presence on Nysa's surface of a small amount of a spectrally red sloped material, of which metal and troilite are the most reasonable candidates, and a material possessing absorption bands near 0.9μm and 1.8μm. A material similar to the carbonaceous chondrite inclusions found in some aubrites can provide a match to the 0.9μm feature and perhaps the 1.8μm feature. The required abundances of these components depends on whether they are areally distributed or intimately mixed with an enstatite rich material. Based on the petrologic associations seen in aubrites and a series of simulated mineral mixtures, an intimate mixture of 69–92% enstatite and 1–11% metal + troilite and an areal component of 7–20% carbonaceous chondrite type material can provide a reasonable match to the 0.3–2.6μm spectrum of Nysa.


Reflectance Spectrum Type Material Enstatite Free Fraction Spectral Difference 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • Edward A. Cloutis
    • 1
  • Michael J. Gaffey
    • 2
  1. 1.ER Georesearch Ltd.CalgaryCanada
  2. 2.Department of Earth and Environmental SciencesRensselaer Polytechnic InstituteTroyU.S.A.

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