September 18, 2010

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By the Scattered Light of the Moon

LRO image M115502787R NAC (NASA/GSFC/Arizona State University); processed by Maurice Collins

This view is of the edge of slump material on the floor of the crater Necho (5.0S, 123.1E) a 30km diameter crater located on the lunar farside. The LRO/ASU team released an enhanced view of the shadowed slope to see into the darkness by the scattered light of surrounding sections of the crater. Chuck wondered what it would look like with the two images on the LRO website were combined into one image, so I merged the two images and here is the resulting image which shows up the slope by reflected light. There is sufficient scattered light in many small craters to light up the interior very clearly, and I imagine that an astronaut working in the shadows would have enough light to work without artificial lights. As for the geology in the picture, the smooth impact melt surface to the left only has a few small craters pitting its surface, and some of the boulders from the top of the slope have rolled onto the impact melt surface. I estimate that Necho is probably Copernican in age. I wonder if that big block on the top slope is made of pure Anorthosite? It sure would be nice if we could send a rover or astronaut down for a closer look one day to find out!

Maurice Collins

Note: Many thanks Chuck for the privilege of being able to do the LPOD's while you are in Rome. We hope you enjoy a well deserved holiday afterwards, and come back with many interesting LPOD's for us from the conference! Have fun!

Technical Details
LROC NAC 2009-12-15 07:52 UT

Related Links
LROC featured image : Necho's Jumbled Floor
IAU reference map LAC 83

Yesterday's LPOD: The Only Pathologist On the Moon

Tomorrow's LPOD: Posidonius - a Geologists Paradise


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