Spectral Parameters for Dawn FC Color Data: Carbonaceous Chondrites and Aqueous Alteration Products as Potential Cerean Analog Materials

Tanja Schäfer, Andreas Nathues, Kurt Mengel, Matthew R.M. Izawa, Edward A. Cloutis, Michael Schäfer, Martin Hoffmann

In Press, Accepted Manuscript, Available online 23 October 2015


“We identified a set of spectral parameters based on Dawn Framing Camera (FC) bandpasses, covering the wavelength range 0.4-1.0 μm, for mineralogical mapping of potential chondritic material and aqueous alteration products on dwarf planet Ceres. Our parameters are inferred from laboratory spectra of well-described and clearly classified carbonaceous chondrites representative for a dark component. We additionally investigated the FC signatures of candidate bright materials including carbonates, sulfates and hydroxide (brucite), which can possibly be exposed on the cerean surface by impact craters or plume activity. Several materials mineralogically related to carbonaceous chondrites, including pure ferromagnesian phyllosilicates, and serpentinites were also investigated. We tested the potential of the derived FC parameters for distinguishing between different carbonaceous chondritic materials, and between other plausible cerean surface materials. We found that the major carbonaceous chondrite groups (CM, CO, CV, CK, and CR) are distinguishable using the FC filter ratios 0.56/0.44 μm and 0.83/0.97 μm. The absorption bands of Fe-bearing phyllosilicates at 0.7 and 0.9 μm in terrestrial samples and CM carbonaceous chondrites can be detected by a combination of FC band parameters using the filters at 0.65, 0.75, 0.83, 0.92 and 0.97 μm. This set of parameters serves as a basis to identify and distinguish different lithologies on the cerean surface by FC multispectral data.”