Lunar Prospector neutron spectrometer constraints on TiO2

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Abstract

[1] Lunar Prospector neutron spectrometer measurements of the epithermal and thermal neutron leakage fluxes are used to provide constraints on TiO2 abundances in lunar surface materials. We use FeO abundance estimates based on both Clementine spectral reflectance techniques and preliminary Lunar Prospector gamma ray spectrometer determinations to first establish a model thermal neutron absorption due to all major elements except titanium. Then we remove the additional absorbing effects due to the rare earth elements gadolinium and samarium by using Lunar Prospector gamma ray spectrometer thorium abundances as a rare earth element proxy. The result can be compared to the ratio of epithermal to thermal neutron fluxes, which point to the presence of the additional thermal neutron absorber, titanium. We can derive abundance estimates of TiO2 and compare to other estimates derived spectroscopically. Our results show a significantly lower abundance of TiO2 than has been derived using Clementine data.

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