March 18, 2016

Jump to: navigation, search

An IR Strip Across a Kipuka

Originally published May 25, 2005


Image Credit: Phil Stooke

An IR Strip Across a Kipuka

What can you do when the Moon is hidden by clouds? Explore it with Clementine images! This image shows the kipuka (old surface surrounded by younger lavas) north of Menelaus, illustrated in LPOD on May 14. The vertical image strip is a mosaic of eleven Clementine long wavelength infrared (LWIR) images downloaded from NASA's Planetary Image Atlas. The original images are impossible to recognize, all useful details are lost in a sea of noise. But by averaging and subtracting the noise, the moon's surface is revealed. Because this is thermal infrared, warm surfaces (darker or facing the sun) are bright and cool surfaces (brighter or facing away from the sun) are dark. Small craters with dark surroundings are in reality fresh bright-ejecta craters. At the bottom we see the rough ejecta of Menelaus crater, and north of it the kipuka, split by a rille, rising above the surrounding plains. In most areas, these LWIR images are the highest resolution views from Clementine.

Phil Stooke

Technical Details:
All processing done in Photoshop. Each frame is filtered to remove noise. The frames are stacked and averaged, and the average frame is then subtracted from each individual image. The result is very bland, but with contrast enhancement and more noise removal this is the result. In the mosaic, overlapping areas are also merged to further reduce noise.

Related Links:
Phil Stooke's Website

Yesterday's LPOD: Grand Central Station

Tomorrow's LPOD: A New Kind of DHC

Author & Editor:
Charles A. Wood



Register, Log in, and join in the comments.