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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}
}

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