April 25, 2005

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A Chain of Mystery


Image Credit: Paolo Lazzarotti

A Chain of Mystery

Astronomers have apparently failed to notice that the Moon is getting closer to the earth. That is a possible conclusion, based upon the continually improving ability of amateurs to image delicate features previously at or beyond capabilities of even the largest observatory telescopes. Consider the Triesnecker Rilles, the rille on the floor of the Alpine Valley, and the Davy crater chain - all are well known lunar features that used to be very difficult to observe or image. And now, as Paolo’s impressive image of the Davy chain demonstrates, amateurs are acquiring images of near-spacecraft quality. I explained the probable origin of the Davy chain in two earlier LPODs - Jan 27, 04 and Jul 14, 04 - as a rat-a-tat-tat of near simultaneous impacts of fragments from a disintegrated comet. But you can see other things in this image too. Note the large, sharp crater (Davy G) at the right end of the chain - it isn’t related to the chain craters but makes it easy to find an inconspicuous crater. Just left of G there is a ruined crater that is a little larger than 35 km Davy at the bottom left. This ruin has been draped by ejecta from the Imbrium basin and only a vague rim and shallow depression remain.

Chuck Wood

Technical Details:
19 March 2005. Planewton DL-252 telescope + Lumenera LU075 M camera + Edmund Optics R+IR filter; 300 of 4300 frames.

Related Links:
Rukl Plate 43

Yesterday's LPOD: Fabulous Fab!

Tomorrow's LPOD: More Spectacular Flows in Imbrium

Author & Editor:
Charles A. Wood



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