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Floor-fractured craters on Ceres and implications for interior processes

October 15, 2018

Several of the impact craters on Ceres have sets of fractures on their floors. These fractures appear similar to those found within a class of lunar craters referred to as floor-fractured craters (FFCs). We have cataloged the Ceres FFCs according to the classification scheme designed for the Moon. An analysis of the depth to diameter ratio for Ceres craters shows that, like lunar FFCs, the Ceres FFCs are anomalously shallow. Large (>50 km) Ceres FFCs are most consistent with Class 1 lunar FFCs, while smaller craters on Ceres are more consistent with Class 4 lunar FFCs. This suggests that Ceres FFCs may similarly be undergoing fracturing due to the intrusion of a low-density material below the craters. While on the Moon (and Mars) the intrusive material is hypothesized to be silicate magma, cryomagmatic intrusions are more likely responsible for the formation of the Ceres FFCs. However, new models suggest that at least some of the FFC fractures may have formed due to the solid-state flow of a low-viscosity and low-density material into the crater wall.

Publication Year 2018
Title Floor-fractured craters on Ceres and implications for interior processes
DOI 10.1029/2018JE005632
Authors Debra L. Buczkowski, Hanna G. Sizemore, Michael T. Bland, Jennifer E. C. Scully, Lynnae C. Quick, Kynan H. G. Hughson, Ryan S. Park, F. Preusker, Carol A. Raymond, Christopher T. Russell
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Journal of Geophysical Research
Index ID 70230966
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Astrogeology Science Center