Surface vector mapping of magnetic anomalies over the Moon using Kaguya and Lunar Prospector observations

Hideo Tsunakawa, Futoshi Takahashi, Hisayoshi Shimizu, Hidetoshi Shibuya, Masaki Matsushima

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89 Citations (Scopus)


We have provided preliminary global maps of three components of the lunar magnetic anomaly on the surface applying the surface vector mapping (SVM) method. The data used in the present study consist of about 5 million observations of the lunar magnetic field at 10-45 km altitudes by Kaguya and Lunar Prospector. The lunar magnetic anomalies were mapped at 0.2 equi-distance points on the surface by the SVM method, showing the highest intensity of 718 nT in the Crisium antipodal region. Overall features on the SVM maps indicate that elongating magnetic anomalies are likely to be dominant on the Moon except for the young large basins with the impact demagnetization. Remarkable demagnetization features suggested by previous studies are also recognized at Hertzsprung and Kolorev craters on the farside. These features indicate that demagnetized areas extend to about 1-2 radii of the basins/craters. There are well-isolated central magnetic anomalies at four craters: Leibnitz, Aitken, Jules Verne, and Grimaldi craters. Their magnetic poles through the dipole source approximation suggest occurrence of the polar wander prior to 3.3-3.5 Ga. When compared with high-albedo markings at several magnetic anomalies such as the Reiner Gamma anomalies, three-dimensional structures of the magnetic field on/near the surface are well correlated with high-albedo areas. These results indicate that the global SVM maps are useful for the study of the lunar magnetic anomalies in comparison with various geological and geophysical data.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1160-1185
Number of pages26
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research: Planets
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2015

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geochemistry and Petrology
  • Geophysics
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Space and Planetary Science


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