Encyclopedia of Planetary Landforms

2015 Edition
| Editors: Henrik Hargitai, Ákos Kereszturi

Dark Mantle Deposit (Regional)

  • Lisa Gaddis
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-3134-3_100

Definition

Diffuse deposit with very low albedo that mantles or drapes over the lunar surface in places.

Synonyms

Description

Regional dark mantle or pyroclastic deposits covering many tens of thousands of square kilometers of the lunar surface. Twenty of the more than 75 known lunar pyroclastic deposits have an extent greater than 1,000 km2. These deposits are characterized by a low albedo in visible wavelengths, and they are concentrated in lunar highland areas close to basaltic mare-filled basins. They are smooth-surfaced, typically draped over more rugged highlands units on the Moon.

Formation

Regional lunar dark mantle deposits are smooth-surfaced, largely fine-grained volcanic units that are thought to be the products of Hawaiian-style fire fountaining which occurs in association with basaltic eruptions (Wilson and Head 1981). Twenty of the known lunar pyroclastic deposits are >1,000 km2 in areal extent and are called “regional” (Gaddis et al. 2003), and...

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.U.S. Geological Survey, Astrogeology Science CenterFlagstaffUSA