A Caltech Library Service

A Comparison of Solar Wind and Estimated Solar System Xenon Abundances: A Test for Solid/ Gas Fractionation in the Solar Nebula

Wiens, Roger C. and Burnett, D. S. and Neugebauer, M. and Pepin, R. O. (1992) A Comparison of Solar Wind and Estimated Solar System Xenon Abundances: A Test for Solid/ Gas Fractionation in the Solar Nebula. In: Proceedings of Lunar and Planetary Science. Proceedings of Lunar and Planetary Science. No.22. Lunar and Planetary Institute , Houston, TX, pp. 153-159. ISBN 0-942862-06-6.

[img] PDF - Published Version
See Usage Policy.


Use this Persistent URL to link to this item:


Significant fractionation of dust/gas from the original interstellar cloud during the formation of the solar system is a distinct possibility. Identification of such an effect would provide important clues to nebular processes. Fractionation of volatiles is not constrained by CI abundances and only for the most abundant ones by photospheric observations. The solar Xe elemental abundance is determined here via solar wind measurements from lunar ilmenites and normalized to Si by spacecraft data. The results are compared with estimated abundances assuming no fractionation, which are relatively well constrained for Xe by s-process calculations, odd-mass abundance interpolations, and odd-even abundance systematics. When corrected for solar wind/photospheric fractionation, the ^(130)Xe abundance given by surface layer oxidation of ilmenite from soil 71501, exposed within the last - 200 m.y., is 0.24 ± 0.09 normalized to Si = 10^6. This is indistinguishable from the estimates made assuming no solid/gas fractionation. A similar result was obtained for Kr by Wiens et al (1991). Results from breccia 79035 ilmenite, exposed at least ~1 Gy ago, indicate that the solar wind Xe flux may have been significantly higher relative to other noble gases, perhaps due to more efficient Xe ionization. If this is true, fluxes of C and S, which have similar first ionization potentials to Xe, should also be higher in the ancient solar wind from the same time period, though such variations have not been observed.

Item Type:Book Section
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
Wiens, Roger C.0000-0002-3409-7344
Burnett, D. S.0000-0001-9521-8675
Additional Information:© 1992 Lunar and Planetary Institute, Houston. This research was supported in part by NASA grants NAG 9-94 to D. Burnett and NAG 9-60 to R. O. Pepin. Reviews by K. Marti and an anonymous reviewer, and a discussion with P. Ryder, are acknowledged.
Group:UNSPECIFIED, Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Series Name:Proceedings of Lunar and Planetary Science
Issue or Number:22
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20150506-120326624
Persistent URL:
Official Citation: A comparison of solar wind and estimated solar system xenon abundances - A test for solid/gas fractionation in the solar nebula Wiens, Roger C.; Burnett, D. S.; Neugebauer, M.; Pepin, R. O. IN: Proceedings of Lunar and Planetary Science, Volume 22; Conference, Houston, TX, Mar. 18-22, 1991 (A92-30851 12-91). Houston, TX, Lunar and Planetary Institute, 1992, p. 153-159.
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:57276
Deposited By: Ruth Sustaita
Deposited On:06 May 2015 22:46
Last Modified:09 Mar 2020 13:18

Repository Staff Only: item control page