Impact flash evolution of CO2 ice, water ice and frozen Martian and lunar regolith-simulant targets

Tandy, Jonathan D., Price, Mark, Wozniakiewicz, Penny, Cole, Mike, Alesbrook, Luke and Avdellidou, Chrysa (2020) Impact flash evolution of CO2 ice, water ice and frozen Martian and lunar regolith-simulant targets. Meteoritics and Planetary Science, 55 (10). pp. 2301-2319. ISSN 1086-9379

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Abstract / Description

The wavelength dependence and temporal evolution of the hypervelocity impact self-luminous plume (or ‘flash’) from CO2 ice, water ice and frozen Martian and lunar regolith-simulant targets have been investigated using the Kent two-stage light-gas gun. An array of ten band-pass filtered photodiodes and a digital camera monitored changes in the impact flash intensity during the different phases of the emitting ejecta. Early-time emission spectra were also recorded to examine short-lived chemical species within the ejecta. Analyses of the impact flash from the varied frozen targets show considerable differences in temporal behaviour, with a strong wavelength dependence observed within monitored near-UV to near-IR spectral regions. Emission spectra showed molecular bands across the full spectral range observed, primarily due to AlO from the projectile, and with little or no contribution from vapourised metal oxides originating from frozen regolith-simulant targets. Additional features within the impact flash decay profiles and emission spectra indicate an inhomogeneity in the impact ejecta composition. A strong correlation between the density of water ice-containing targets and the impact flash rate-of-decay was shown for profiles uninfluenced by significant atomic/molecular emission, although the applicability to other target materials is currently unknown. Changes in impact speed resulted in considerable differences in the temporal evolution of the impact flash, with additional variations observed between recorded spectral regions. A strong correlation between the impact speed and the emission decay rate was also shown for CO2 ice targets. These results may have important implications for future analyses of impact flashes both on the lunar/Martian surface and on other frozen bodies within the Solar System.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: hypervelocity impact self-luminous plume (flash); CO2 ice; water ice; Martian; lunar regolith-simulant targets; Kent two-stage light-gas gun
Subjects: 500 Natural Sciences and Mathematics > 520 Astronomy & allied sciences
500 Natural Sciences and Mathematics > 530 Physics
500 Natural Sciences and Mathematics > 540 Chemistry & allied sciences
600 Technology > 620 Engineering & allied operations
Department: School of Human Sciences
Depositing User: Jonathan Tandy
Date Deposited: 15 Oct 2020 09:45
Last Modified: 18 Dec 2020 16:05


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