Phyllosilicate Absorption Features in Main-Belt and Outer-Belt Asteroid Reflectance Spectra

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Science  10 Nov 1989:
Vol. 246, Issue 4931, pp. 790-792
DOI: 10.1126/science.246.4931.790


Absorption features having depths up to 5% are identified in high-quality, high-resolution reflectance spectra of 16 dark asteroids in the main belt and in the Cybele and Hilda groups. Analogs among the CM2 carbonaceous chondrite meteorites exist for some of these asteroids, suggesting that these absorptions are due to iron oxides in phyllosilicates formed on the asteroidal surfaces by aqueous alteration processes. Spectra of ten additional asteroids, located beyond the outer edge of the main belt, show no discernible absorption features, suggesting that aqueous alteration did not always operate at these heliocentric distances.

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