Special Reports

X-ray Fluorescence Spectrometry of Asteroid Itokawa by Hayabusa

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Science  02 Jun 2006:
Vol. 312, Issue 5778, pp. 1338-1341
DOI: 10.1126/science.1125731

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X-ray fluorescence spectrometry of asteroid 25143 Itokawa was performed by the x-ray spectrometer onboard Hayabusa during the first touchdown on 19 November 2005. We selected those data observed during relatively enhanced solar activity and determined average elemental mass ratios of Mg/Si = 0.78 ± 0.09 and Al/Si = 0.07 ± 0.03. Our preliminary results suggest that Itokawa has a composition consistent with that of ordinary chondrites, but primitive achondrites cannot be ruled out. Among ordinary chondrites, LL- or L-chondrites appear to be more likely than H-chondrites. No substantial regional difference was found on the asteroid surface, indicating its homogeneity in composition.

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