Vesta's Pinaria region: Original basaltic achondrite material derived from mixing upper and lower crust

L. A. McFadden, J. P. Combe, E. Ammannito, A. Frigeri, K. Stephan, A. Longobardo, E. Palomba, F. Tosi, F. Zambon, K. Krohn, M. C. De Sanctis, V. Reddy, L. Le Corre, A. Nathues, C. M. Pieters, T. H. Prettyman, C. A. Raymond, C. T. Russell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Analysis of data from the Dawn mission shows that the Pinaria region of Vesta spanning a portion of the rim of the Rheasilvia basin is bright and anhydrous. Reflectance spectra, absorption band centers, and their variations, cover the range of pyroxenes from diogenite-rich to howardite and eucrite compositions, with no evidence of olivine in this region. By examining band centers and depths of the floor, walls and rims of six major craters in the region, we find a lane of diogenite-rich material next to howardite-eucrite material that does not follow the local topography. The source of this material is not clear and is probably ejecta from post-Rheasilvia impacts. Material of a howardite-eucrite composition originating from beyond the Rheasilvia basin is evident on the western edge of the region. Overall, the Pinaria region exposes the complete range of basaltic achondrite parent body material, with little evidence of contamination of non-basaltic achondrite material. With both high reflectance and low abundance of hydrated material, this region of Vesta may be considered the "Pinaria desert".

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)150-161
Number of pages12
StatePublished - Jan 30 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Asteroid Vesta
  • Asteroids, composition
  • Asteroids, surfaces
  • Meteorites
  • Mineralogy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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