The loss of K, REE, Th, and U from a Martian and a terrestrial basalt by acidic leaching
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CitationDreibus, G., Haubold, R., Huisl, W., & Spettel, B. (2008). The loss of K, REE, Th, and U from a Martian and a terrestrial basalt by acidic leaching. Meteoritics & Planetary Science, 43(11), 1895-1908.
PublisherThe Meteoritical Society
JournalMeteoritics & Planetary Science
AbstractThe mobilization of K, rare earth elements (REE), Th, and U from Martian surface material upon contact with acidic solutions probably occurred extensively on Mars about 4 to 3.5 Ga ago and seems to have occurred locally in more recent times. We have studied the dissolution of these elements by leaching the basaltic shergottite Zagami and the terrestrial basalt BE-N at constant pH values ranging from 5 to 1 in the absence and presence of added salts. Potassium is nearly immobile in Zagami and mobilized readily from BE-N. The REE reside mostly in calcium phosphates and dissolve readily, with those in whitlockite of Zagami reacting slightly better than those in apatite of BE-N. Thorium and U also reside mostly in calcium phosphates. Both dissolve similarly for both basalts and less readily than the REE. The experiments indicate the extent of the mobilization of K, REE, Th, and U, when acidic water leached the surface of Mars. Potassium was released slowly and in a small relative amount. The REE, and particularly the LREE, became mobile readily and were possibly distributed over large areas before immobilization. Thorium and U dissolved more slowly than the REE and were distributed less widely.