Geophysical Research Letters

Infrared reflectance spectra (2.2–15 μm) of plagioclase feldspars



Laboratory results show that (1) the Christiansen frequency (CF) feature in mid-infrared reflectance spectra of powders can be used to accurately distinguish plagioclase composition, and (2) the wavelength position of the CF is not affected by vitrification of the plagioclase. Although the CF position does not distinguish glass from crystalline forms of plagioclase, other features (combination-tone, overtone, restrahlen bands) in the mid-IR spectra of plagioclase can be used for that purpose. These results have important implications for application of thermal emission spectroscopy to mapping the surface composition of regolith-covered planetary bodies like the Moon, Mars, and asteroids.