Publications by authors named "Laura M Corley"

1 Publications

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Untangling the formation and liberation of water in the lunar regolith.

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 2019 06 20;116(23):11165-11170. Epub 2019 May 20.

Department of Chemistry, University of Hawai'i at Mānoa, Honolulu, HI 96822;

The source of water (HO) and hydroxyl radicals (OH), identified on the lunar surface, represents a fundamental, unsolved puzzle. The interaction of solar-wind protons with silicates and oxides has been proposed as a key mechanism, but laboratory experiments yield conflicting results that suggest that proton implantation alone is insufficient to generate and liberate water. Here, we demonstrate in laboratory simulation experiments combined with imaging studies that water can be efficiently generated and released through rapid energetic heating like micrometeorite impacts into anhydrous silicates implanted with solar-wind protons. These synergistic effects of solar-wind protons and micrometeorites liberate water at mineral temperatures from 10 to 300 K via vesicles, thus providing evidence of a key mechanism to synthesize water in silicates and advancing our understanding on the origin of water as detected on the Moon and other airless bodies in our solar system such as Mercury and asteroids.
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June 2019