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Title: Modeled Martian subsurface elemental composition measurements with the Probing In situ with Neutron and Gamma ray instrument: Gamma and Neutron Measurements on Mars

Abstract

Here, the Probing In situ with Neutrons and Gamma rays (PING) instrument is an innovative application of active neutron-induced gamma-ray technology. The objective of PING is to measure the elemental composition of the Martian regolith. As part 2 of a two-part submission, this manuscript presents PING's sensitivities as a function of the Martian regolith depth and PING's uncertainties in the measurements as a function of observation time in passive and active mode. Part 1 of our submission models the associated regolith types. The modeled sensitivities show that in PING's active mode, where both a Pulsed Neutron Generator (PNG) and a Gamma-Ray Spectrometer (GRS) are used, PING can interrogate the material below the rover to about 20 cm due to the penetrating nature of the high-energy neutrons and the resulting secondary gamma rays observed with the GRS. PING is capable of identifying most major and minor rock-forming elements, including H, O, Na, Mn, Mg, Al, Si, P, S, Cl, Cr, K, Ca, Ti, Fe and Th. The modeled uncertainties show that PING's use of a PNG reduces the required observation times by an order of magnitude over a passive operating mode where the PNG is turned off. While the active modemore » allows for more complete elemental inventories with higher sensitivity, the gamma-ray signatures of some elements are strong enough to detect in passive mode. We show that PING can detect changes in key marker elements and make thermal neutron measurements in about 1 minute that are sensitive to H and Cl.« less

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1];  [2]; ORCiD logo [3];  [4]; ORCiD logo [5];  [6];  [7];  [6];  [8]
  1. Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos New Mexico USA
  2. Computer Sciences Corporation, Lanham-Seabrook Maryland USA
  3. Department of Physics, Catholic University of America, Washington District of Columbia USA
  4. Department of Physics, University of Connecticut, Storrs Connecticut USA
  5. Department of Geology and Geophysics, Louisiana State University and A. & M. C, Baton Rouge Louisiana USA
  6. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt Maryland USA
  7. Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Knoxville Tennessee USA
  8. Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Knoxville Tennessee USA
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1338736
Report Number(s):
LA-UR-16-20033
Journal ID: ISSN 2333-5084
Grant/Contract Number:
AC52-06NA25396
Resource Type:
Journal Article: Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Earth and Space Science
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 4; Journal Issue: 2; Journal ID: ISSN 2333-5084
Publisher:
American Geophysical Union (AGU)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
46 INSTRUMENTATION RELATED TO NUCLEAR SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY; planetary sciences

Citation Formats

Nowicki, Suzanne F., Evans, Larry G., Starr, Richard D., Schweitzer, Jeffrey S., Karunatillake, Suniti, McClanahan, Timothy P., Moersch, Jeffrey E., Parsons, Ann M., and Tate, Christopher G. Modeled Martian subsurface elemental composition measurements with the Probing In situ with Neutron and Gamma ray instrument: Gamma and Neutron Measurements on Mars. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.1002/2016EA000162.
Nowicki, Suzanne F., Evans, Larry G., Starr, Richard D., Schweitzer, Jeffrey S., Karunatillake, Suniti, McClanahan, Timothy P., Moersch, Jeffrey E., Parsons, Ann M., & Tate, Christopher G. Modeled Martian subsurface elemental composition measurements with the Probing In situ with Neutron and Gamma ray instrument: Gamma and Neutron Measurements on Mars. United States. doi:10.1002/2016EA000162.
Nowicki, Suzanne F., Evans, Larry G., Starr, Richard D., Schweitzer, Jeffrey S., Karunatillake, Suniti, McClanahan, Timothy P., Moersch, Jeffrey E., Parsons, Ann M., and Tate, Christopher G. Wed . "Modeled Martian subsurface elemental composition measurements with the Probing In situ with Neutron and Gamma ray instrument: Gamma and Neutron Measurements on Mars". United States. doi:10.1002/2016EA000162. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1338736.
@article{osti_1338736,
title = {Modeled Martian subsurface elemental composition measurements with the Probing In situ with Neutron and Gamma ray instrument: Gamma and Neutron Measurements on Mars},
author = {Nowicki, Suzanne F. and Evans, Larry G. and Starr, Richard D. and Schweitzer, Jeffrey S. and Karunatillake, Suniti and McClanahan, Timothy P. and Moersch, Jeffrey E. and Parsons, Ann M. and Tate, Christopher G.},
abstractNote = {Here, the Probing In situ with Neutrons and Gamma rays (PING) instrument is an innovative application of active neutron-induced gamma-ray technology. The objective of PING is to measure the elemental composition of the Martian regolith. As part 2 of a two-part submission, this manuscript presents PING's sensitivities as a function of the Martian regolith depth and PING's uncertainties in the measurements as a function of observation time in passive and active mode. Part 1 of our submission models the associated regolith types. The modeled sensitivities show that in PING's active mode, where both a Pulsed Neutron Generator (PNG) and a Gamma-Ray Spectrometer (GRS) are used, PING can interrogate the material below the rover to about 20 cm due to the penetrating nature of the high-energy neutrons and the resulting secondary gamma rays observed with the GRS. PING is capable of identifying most major and minor rock-forming elements, including H, O, Na, Mn, Mg, Al, Si, P, S, Cl, Cr, K, Ca, Ti, Fe and Th. The modeled uncertainties show that PING's use of a PNG reduces the required observation times by an order of magnitude over a passive operating mode where the PNG is turned off. While the active mode allows for more complete elemental inventories with higher sensitivity, the gamma-ray signatures of some elements are strong enough to detect in passive mode. We show that PING can detect changes in key marker elements and make thermal neutron measurements in about 1 minute that are sensitive to H and Cl.},
doi = {10.1002/2016EA000162},
journal = {Earth and Space Science},
number = 2,
volume = 4,
place = {United States},
year = {Wed Feb 01 00:00:00 EST 2017},
month = {Wed Feb 01 00:00:00 EST 2017}
}

Journal Article:
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  • The capability of determining elemental concentrations through logging measurements has recently been established. Most of the elemental concentrations are determined by thermal neutron-induced gamma-ray measurements. Optimal use of these data requires a knowledge of the statistical uncertainty of each concentration. These uncertainties are presented and verified by comparing log-derived concentrations with laboratory-analyzed cores recovered from logged wells.
  • Developed for the oil industry, well logging instrumentation based on electrical, acoustic, and nuclear measurements has been providing information about the localization and evaluation of hydrocarbon-bearing strata for petroleum geologists and engineers since 1927. This method exploring properties of the earth's crust without taking physical samples is attracting a growing audience of geologists and geophysicists because of recent developments that permit nondestructive measurements of subsurface geochemistry. A combination of nuclear measurement techniques, which use gamma ray and neutron sources, can provide detailed information on rock composition of interest to both industry and academia. 26 refs., 7 figs.
  • This contribution describes a new local structure compatible gas/liquid cell apparatus for probing disordered materials at high pressures and variable temperatures in the Neutron Powder Diffraction instrument at the Lujan Neutron Scattering Center, Los Alamos National Laboratory. The new sample environment offers choices for sample canister thickness and canister material type. Finite element modeling is utilized to establish maximum allowable working pressures of 414 MPa at 15 K and 121 MPa at 600 K. High quality atomic pair distribution function data extraction and modeling have been demonstrated for a calibration standard (Si powder) and for supercritical and subcritical CO{sub 2}more » measurements. The new sample environment was designed to specifically target experimental studies of the local atomic structures involved in geologic CO{sub 2} sequestration, but will be equally applicable to a wide variety of energy applications, including sorption of fluids on nano/meso-porous solids, clathrate hydrate formation, catalysis, carbon capture, and H{sub 2} and natural gas uptake/storage.« less
  • This contribution describes a new local structure compatible gas/liquid cell apparatus for probing disordered materials at high pressures and variable temperatures in the Neutron Powder Diffraction instrument at the Lujan Neutron Scattering Center, Los Alamos National Laboratory. The new sample environment offers choices for sample canister thickness and canister material type. Finite element modeling is utilized to establish maximum allowable working pressures of 414 MPa at 15 K and 121 MPa at 600 K. High quality atomic pair distribution function data extraction and modeling have been demonstrated for a calibration standard (Si powder) and for supercritical and subcritical CO 2measurements.more » As a result, the new sample environment was designed to specifically target experimental studies of the local atomic structures involved in geologic CO 2 sequestration, but will be equally applicable to a wide variety of energy applications, including sorption of fluids on nano/meso-porous solids, clathrate hydrate formation, catalysis, carbon capture, and H 2 and natural gas uptake/storage.« less