Fractionated Martian atmosphere in the nakhlites?

M. J. Drake, T. D. Swindle, T. Owen, D. S. Musselwhite

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations


Considerable evidence points to a martian origin of the SNC meteorites. Noble gas isotopic compositions have been measured in most SNC meteorites. The 129Xe/132Xe vs. 84Kr/132Xe ratios in Chassigny, most shergottites, and lithology C of EETA 79001 define a linear array. This array is thought to be mixing line between martian mantle and martian atmosphere. One of the SNC meteorites, Nakhla contains a leachable component that has an elevated 129Xe/132Xe ratio relative to its 84Kr/132Xe ratio when compared to this approximately linear array. The elevated Xe isotopic ratio may represent a distinct reservoir in the martian crust or mantle. More plausibly, it is elementally fractioned martian atmosphere. -from Authors

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)854-859
Number of pages6
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1994

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Environmental Science
  • General Earth and Planetary Sciences


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