November 10, 2006

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Flows & Falling Rock

image by Stefan Lammel, Uxbridge, England

Most photos of Maurolycus seem to be at fairly high Sun angles that reveal the crater’s entire floor, but this image by Stefan is at lower illumination. In exchange for losing part of the floor to shadows he gains remarkable depiction of flat ridges on the smooth floor. These ridges focus attention once again on the nature of smooth crater floors that are not dark at high sun conditions and hence are not maria. The ridges suggest some sort of flow, perhaps of a non-mare type lava, or perhaps of fluidized ejecta from a basin impact. A different type of flow is exhibited at the southern edge of Maurolycus. A flow of ejecta from Maurolycus is clear where it covered part of the floor of a smaller crater that it partially overlapped. Interestingly, Maurolycus also overlapped another smaller crater to its northwest. And another flow feature is visible on the western floor of Maurolycus. The debris there is due to the formation of the crater that cuts Maurolycus’ northwest rim. Finally, one other anomalous feature is visible. Notice the sunlit ridge that is the east rim of Maurolycus? It is the scarp remaining as the terraces on this side of the rim collapsed to the floor. As you trace this scarp northward it dies out and the remainder of the rim did not suffer a similar collapse - terraces reach from the rim crest to the floor. A lot of history is revealed in this excellent image!

Chuck Wood

Technical Details:
Oct-13-06 03:29UT. 10in f4.8 Newtonian, DMK 21AF0 red filter 1&3: 4x Powermate, 2: 5x Powermate

Related Links:
Rükl chart 66
Stefan’s website

Yesterday's LPOD: Glorious Times Two

Tomorrow's LPOD: Two Dead Map-Makers


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