COG3 Seminar: Alberto Saal (Brown University)

Friday, May 11, 2018 at 10:00am to 11:00am

Building E25, 119
45 CARLETON ST, Cambridge, MA 02142

"Magmatic Degassing and the Volatile Budget of the Moon"

Establishing the origin of water and other volatiles, and how and when the budgets of these elements were set in planetary bodies during the earliest stages of Solar System evolution has important implications for understanding the genesis and evolution of the terrestrial planets. The Moon provides a frozen record of the first few hundred million years of Solar System evolution and, thus, offers a unique opportunity to establish the origin, budget and timing of the water, and other volatiles, delivery to the terrestrial planets. Presently, there are two distinct views: one, suggesting that the Moon is “bone-dry”, 100 to 1000 times more depleted in highly volatile elements (e.g., water) than Earth. The second view suggests that the Moon is only 5 to 10 times more depleted in highly volatile elements than Earth. Therefore, the estimated extent of the Moon’s volatile depletion differs between the two views by a factor of 20 to 200. We show that  the 20 to 200 factor in the estimated Moon’s volatile depletion might originate from the fact that the degassing of volatile elements during lunar magmatic processes has not been carefully considered.  We have to account for the effect of magmatic degassing  before we can  estimate the extent of volatile depletion of the Moon.

About the Speaker

I received both a B.S. and a Ph.D. degree in Geology from the Universidad Nacional de Córdoba, Argentina and a Ph.D. in Oceanography from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology/Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. After a postdoctoral fellowship and two years as a Storke-Doherty Lecturer in the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences at Columbia University and as Associate Research Scientist at Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, I joined the Department of Earth, Environmental and Planetary Sciences at Brown University in 2003.

About this Seminar

The Chemical Oceanography, Geology, Geochemistry, and Geobiology Seminar [COG3] is a student-run seminar series. Topics include chemical oceanography, geology, geochemistry, and geobiology. The seminars take place on Fridays from 10-11am in Building E25, Room 119, unless otherwise noted (term-time only).

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