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Keywords:

  • Chandrayaan-1;
  • Moon;
  • Moon Mineralogy Mapper;
  • Theophilus;
  • lunar spectroscopy;
  • spinel

[1] Analysis of high resolution Moon Mineralogy Mapper (M3) data reveals the presence of a prominent Mg-spinel-rich lithology in the central peaks of Theophilus crater on the lunar nearside. Other peak-associated lithologies are comprised of plagioclase, olivine, and pyroxene-bearing materials. A consistent spatial association of Mg-spinel with mafic-free anorthosite is recognized. Documentation of Theophilus central peaks brings the global inventory of Mg-spinel-rich lithology to two widely separated occurrences, namely Theophilus on the lunar nearside and Moscoviense basin on the farside. The Theophilus crater target region lies on one of the inner rings of the Nectaris basin, indicating that the Mg-spinel-bearing lithology source was deep in the lunar crust.