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TOPIC: The Moon


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Lunar south pole
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southpole6b.jpg
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Credit NASA


The Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera captured this image of the lunar south pole on the 16th September, 2009.
The lunar south pole is located on the rim of the 19 kilometre-wide Shackleton crater.

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Cabeus A Crater
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Cabeusb.jpg
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RE: The Moon
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Water on the Moon?
A decade ago Faith Vilas, director of the Multiple Mirror Telescope in Arizona, developed a sideline obsession with the Moon. Perusing archived data from the Galileo mission to Jupiter, she saw something odd in the pictures taken of the Moon. When she filtered the pictures for certain infrared wavelengths, a telling signal popped out at a few spots near the Moon's south pole. The signal, at least in asteroids, is associated with phyllosilicates, which are minerals that need two things to form: heat and water. Was this a clue pointing to all the water ice that many think hides within the Moon's polar craters?


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EPSC09/16: CIXS success will provide new understanding of lunar surface

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Shackleton Crater
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From miles above, the moon's Shackleton crater appears deep, dark and smooth - an ideal place for explorers to search for water ice.
But newly released data from a NASA spacecraft orbiting the moon, after launching this summer from Cape Canaveral, shows the crater's steep sides and lumpy surface would present treacherous terrain.

"It looks very smooth in the bottom of that crater there, but actually that is deceiving. These slopes are sufficiently steep that you want to be extremely careful with them" - David Smith, principal investigator for the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter's laser altimeter instrument.

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RE: The Moon
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The coldest spot in our solar system may be on the moon
In course of producing the first ever temperature map of the moon, Nasa discovered that at its south pole temperatures are lower than on Pluto, despite being far nearer to the sun.
Temperatures recorded by Nasa's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter were measured at 397 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 238 Celsius) below zero, just 62 degrees Fahrenheit (35 Celsius) higher than absolute zero.

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Japanese Lunar Mission Provides a Glimpse at How the Moon Took Shape
Data from the recently retired Kaguya spacecraft support the notion that the moon's crust congealed from an ocean of magma

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Rain of meteorites makes the moon hum
A steady barrage of small meteorite impacts should cause the moon to "ring", but no seismometers sent to the moon to date have been sensitive enough to hear it. So Philippe Lognonné at the Institute of Earth Physics of Paris and colleagues decided to work out how loud the ring is.
The team estimated the meteorite population in the solar neighbourhood, and calculated the likely seismic signals that would be created by a range of meteorite sizes and velocities as they strike the moon.

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Tsiolkovskiy crater
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Uplift, Boulders of Tsiolkovskiy
Tsiolkovskiy (185 km diameter) is a spectacular example of complex impact crater. It has a terraced rim, a central peak, and a floor flooded with mare basalts. Impact events release tremendous amounts of energy and result in very dynamic changes in the local landscape. Just after the initial impact, the central peak was uplifted from lower crustal rock, forming a giant mountain in the middle of the crater. Later large and small pieces of that uplifted rock rolled down and accumulated at the base of the slope -- just waiting for future lunar explorers to examine.

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RE: The Moon
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LOIRP Releases Restored Image of Lunar South Pole
This image, LO-IV-179-H1, taken by Lunar Orbiter IV on May 24, 1967 at 16:19:23.809 GMT, shows a portion of the lunar south polar region. A much larger version [1.8 MB JPG] can be downloaded here. You can download the full resolution image [692 MB tiff] here at NLSI.

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