January 13, 2014

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Wrinkles and Flukes

image by Howard Eskildsen

Has anyone ever actually looked at this part of the Moon? There are so many other interesting distractions nearby such as the Messier pair, Crisium, Nectaris, the Western Chain, etc, that this place is about as close to nowhere on the Moon as one could seem to get. At first glance it may seem dull and uninteresting, but give it a look. Lava flows that were once flat dominate the area, and have been contorted and squeezed into wrinkled ridges known as "dorsa." Just imagine the forces that pressed from opposite directions to produce these ridges that have been named after scientists, geologists, and explorers.

Only a few craters dot the landscape and most are quite small. On the lower right corner of the image three medium-sized craters are peppered with smaller craters that are secondary’s from the Langrenus impact (the NW margin of Langrenus is visible in the lower right corner). Other secondary’s can be seen across the image, becoming smaller and fewer as the distance from the parent crater increases. The largest of the three non-secondary craters is named Biharz, after a German doctor who discovered the flat worm (fluke) that causes the disease schistosomiasis. Webb, on the upper right of the image, was an amateur astronomer known for his popularizing deep sky astronomy; what a fitting reward for his dedicated astronomy outreach. Finally, Lindbergh has here landed in an ocean that he did not cross. It seems appropriate that such an accomplished aviator and explorer would end up in the middle of a remote region of the Moon, but perhaps it was just a fluke.

Howard Eskildsen

Related Links
21st Century Atlas chart 3.

Yesterday's LPOD: Degassing Moon

Tomorrow's LPOD: But is it Art?


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