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Two researchers from the universities of Valladolid and Alicante are developing a mathematical formula to study the rotation of the moon, taking into account its structure, which comprises a solid external layer and a fluid internal core.
Their work is part of an international study, which has come up with an improved theoretical model about the orbital and rotational dynamics of the Earth and its satellite, and which the scientific community will be able to use to obtain more precise measurements in order to aid future NASA missions to the moon.
Juan J. A. Getino, from the Applied Mathematics Department of the University of Valladolid, and Alberto Escapa, from the Applied Mathematics Department of the Higher Polytechnic School of the University of Alicante, suggest in their work that the Earth and the moon should be considered as "multi-layered" systems. In order to analyse their movements, the researchers have used Hamiltonian mechanics, a kind of classical mechanics used, among other things, to study the movements of heavenly bodies in response to gravitational effects.

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Title: Prospects in the orbital and rotational dynamics of the Moon with the advent of sub-centimetre lunar laser ranging
Authors: S.M. Kopeikin, Pavlis,, D. Pavlis, V.A. Brumberg,  A. Escapa, J. Getino, A. Gusev, J. Müller, W.-T. Ni and N. Petrova

Lunar laser ranging (LLR) measurements are crucial for advanced exploration of the laws of fundamental gravitational physics and geophysics as well as for future human and robotic missions to the Moon. The corner-cube reflectors (CCR) currently on the Moon require no power and still work perfectly since their installation during the project Apollo era. Current LLR technology allows us to measure distances to the Moon with a precision approaching 1 mm. As NASA pursues the vision of taking humans back to the Moon, new, more precise laser ranging applications will be demanded, including continuous tracking from more sites on Earth, placing new CCR arrays on the Moon, and possibly installing other devices such as transponders, etc. for multiple scientific and technical purposes. Since this effort involves humans in space, then in all situations the accuracy, fidelity, and robustness of the measurements, their adequate interpretation, and any products based on them, are of utmost importance. Successful achievement of this goal strongly demands further significant improvement of the theoretical model of the orbital and rotational dynamics of the Earth-Moon system. This model should inevitably be based on the theory of general relativity, fully incorporate the relevant geophysical processes, lunar librations, tides, and should rely upon the most recent standards and recommendations of the IAU for data analysis. This paper discusses methods and problems in developing such a mathematical model. The model will take into account all the classical and relativistic effects in the orbital and rotational motion of the Moon and Earth at the sub-centimetre level. The model is supposed to be implemented as a part of the computer code underlying NASA Goddard's orbital analysis and geophysical parameter estimation package GEODYN and the ephemeris package PMOE 2003 of the Purple Mountain Observatory. The new model will allow us to navigate a spacecraft precisely to a location on the Moon. It will also greatly improve our understanding of the structure of the lunar interior and the nature of the physical interaction at the core-mantle interface layer. The new theory and upcoming millimetre LLR will give us the means to perform one of the most precise fundamental tests of general relativity in the solar system.

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Moons polar craters could be the place to find lunar ice
Scientists have discovered where they believe would be the best place to find ice on the moon.
Astrophysicists, led by an expert at Durham University, say if frozen water exists then it is most likely to be found near to the moon's poles in craters that are permanently shaded from the sun.
Their findings are based on a new computer analysis of data from the Lunar Prospector, a space probe sent to the moon in 1998 by NASA. The researchers showed that hydrogen on the moon is concentrated into polar craters where temperatures are colder than minus 170 degrees Celsius.
Hydrogen, together with the oxygen that is abundant within moon rock, is a key element in making water.
If ice is present in the craters then the researchers say it could potentially provide a water source for the eventual establishment of a manned base on the moon. A moon base could be used as a platform for exploration into the further reaches of our solar system.

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2009 Lunar Perigees and Apogees

              Perigee                            Apogee
---------------------------------   ---------------------------------
Jan 10 10:53 357500 km +  F-  16h   Jan 23  0:12 406115 km -  N-3d 7h
Feb  7 20:09 361486 km    F-1d18h   Feb 19 17:01 405131 km    N-5d 8h
Mar  7 15:08 367019 km    F-3d11h   Mar 19 13:17 404301 km    N-7d 2h
Apr  2  2:32 370013 km    N+6d10h   Apr 16  9:17 404231 km    F+6d18h
Apr 28  6:28 366041 km    N+3d 3h   May 14  2:58 404914 km    F+4d22h
May 26  3:45 361154 km    N+1d15h   Jun 10 16:05 405785 km +  F+2d21h
Jun 23 10:40 358017 km    N+  15h   Jul  7 21:40 406232 km ++ F+  12h
Jul 21 20:17 357464 km -- N-   6h   Aug  4  0:43 406026 km +  F-2d 0h
Aug 19  4:54 359641 km    N-1d 5h   Aug 31 11:05 405267 km    F-4d 4h
Sep 16  7:57 364053 km    N-2d10h   Sep 28  3:34 404431 km    F-6d 2h
Oct 13 12:29 369067 km    N-4d17h   Oct 25 23:19 404166 km    N+7d17h
Nov  7  7:31 368899 km    F+4d12h   Nov 22 20:08 404734 km    N+6d 0h
Dec  4 14:13 363478 km    F+2d 6h   Dec 20 14:55 405730 km    N+4d 2h

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Brown geologist searching for water on moon
There may not be enough for astronauts to someday go skating, but some scientists suspect that theres ice on the moon.

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Signs of late volcanism seen on moon
Volcanic activity on the far side of the moon may have lasted longer than previously thought, recent images from a Japanese lunar satellite suggest.
The finding, detailed in the Nov. 7 issue of the journal Science, could help shed light on the moon's formation and evolution.
Scientists think that the moon formed when a rogue planet about the size of Mars crashed into Earth and ripped out a chunk of the planet's molten mantle. Some of the material from that chunk began to orbit Earth, gradually cooling over millions of years to form the moon.

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Two new lunar crater names have been approved by the AUI.
The names Haworth and Lenard have been approved for the lunar craters located at 86.8S, 4W, and 85.2N, 105W.

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Shackleton crater
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New images don't show exposed water ice deposits in Shackleton crater
New images of Shackleton taken by the Japanese lunar explorer satellite KAGUYA (SELENE) support the view that there likely aren't any exposed water ice deposits in the crater.
The images were made during lunar mid-summer, when enough sunlight is scattered off the upper inner wall of the crater to provide faint illumination of the inside of the crater.

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Among the most prominent features on the moon are craters, that pock mark its entire moon surface and there has been a tradition to name these after well-known people like Galileo, Copernicus, and others.
Among these, well known Indian names like Raman, Mitra and Saha also find mention.

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The peak of eternal light
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The peak of eternal light on the Moon would be an ideal site for a base
The peak, located close to the rim of the Shackleton Crater is constantly illuminated by sunlight and is a favoured location for those in planning future manned missions to the Moon, as it would mean that solar panels could be used almost constantly to generate an electricity supply for a lunar base.

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OCCULTATIONS OF PLANETS BY THE ECLIPSED MOON 0-3000

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