APOD: A Colorful Side of the Moon (2011 Nov 18)

Comments and questions about the APOD on the main view screen.
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APOD: A Colorful Side of the Moon (2011 Nov 18)

Post by APOD Robot » Fri Nov 18, 2011 5:06 am

Image A Colorful Side of the Moon

Explanation: This colorful topographical map of the Moon is centered on the lunar farside, the side not seen from planet Earth. That view is available to the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter though, as the spacecraft's wide angle camera images almost the entire lunar surface every month. Stereo overlap of the imaging has allowed the computation of topographical maps with coverage between 80 degrees north and south latitude. The results have about a 300 meter resolution on the lunar surface and 10 to 20 meter elevation accuracy. Data closer to the north and south poles is filled in using the orbiter's laser altimeter. In this map, white, red, green, and purple represent progressively lower elevations. In fact, the large circular splotch tending to purple hues at the bottom is the farside's South Pole-Aitken Basin. About 2500 kilometers in diameter and over 12 kilometers deep, it is one of the largest impact basins in the Solar System.

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Re: APOD: A Colorful Side of the Moon (2011 Nov 18)

Post by bystander » Fri Nov 18, 2011 5:14 am

Know the quiet place within your heart and touch the rainbow of possibility; be
alive to the gentle breeze of communication, and please stop being such a jerk.
— Garrison Keillor

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Re: APOD: A Colorful Side of the Moon (2011 Nov 18)

Post by Beyond » Fri Nov 18, 2011 5:48 am

That zoomify is a real hoot :!: Well, i scoured the whole backside and didn't find any evidence of any Alien spaceships or bases. Perhaps if they can one day get better resolution to pick up smaller things :?: :?: I'll bet that when they've had time to analyse things, they'll find that the moon isn't made out of cheese either :!: Even though with the elevation colors, it kinda looks like a strange case of moldy. :mrgreen:
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Re: APOD: A Colorful Side of the Moon (2011 Nov 18)

Post by giant » Fri Nov 18, 2011 7:26 am

Wow, how did you get the background image to do that wavy optical illusion motion? Pretty neat!

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Re: APOD: A Colorful Side of the Moon (2011 Nov 18)

Post by starstruck » Fri Nov 18, 2011 7:30 am

Woa!, pure psychedelic! . . yeah baby, groovy! So when we went to the moon at the end of the sixties and into the early seventies, it looks like we didn't just leave a few items of spent space-junk lying around, we left the hippy culture behind up there too, it just went to the farside . . who knew! Seriously, the information this image conveys is really enlightening. To create that Aitken Basin must have taken some BIG impact, it's quite amazing it didn't smash the moon completely in half! Yep, it's great fun zooming in over on that third link.

deathfleer

Re: APOD: A Colorful Side of the Moon (2011 Nov 18)

Post by deathfleer » Fri Nov 18, 2011 7:58 am

I dont believe that it is one of the largest crater basin in the solar system, there should be many larger ones in the large planets.

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Re: APOD: A Colorful Side of the Moon (2011 Nov 18)

Post by neufer » Fri Nov 18, 2011 12:32 pm

Beyond wrote:
That zoomify is a real hoot :!:

Well, i scoured the whole backside and didn't find any evidence of any Alien spaceships or bases.
That's because the aliens who inhabit the Far-side of the moon are all Flatlanders.

They are preparing this very moment to attack the internet, invade our computer screens and take over the world :!:
Art Neuendorffer

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Re: APOD: A Colorful Side of the Moon (2011 Nov 18)

Post by geckzilla » Fri Nov 18, 2011 12:48 pm

deathfleer wrote:I dont believe that it is one of the largest crater basin in the solar system, there should be many larger ones in the large planets.
I'm not aware of them. Could you point a couple of them out? I guess there's the death star hole on Mimas...
Just call me "geck" because "zilla" is like a last name.

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Re: APOD: A Colorful Side of the Moon (2011 Nov 18)

Post by neufer » Fri Nov 18, 2011 1:09 pm

geckzilla wrote:
deathfleer wrote:
I dont believe that it is one of the largest crater basin in the solar system,
there should be many larger ones in the large planets.
I'm not aware of them. Could you point a couple of them out?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/North_Polar_Basin_%28Mars%29 wrote: <<The North Polar Basin, or Borealis basin, is a large basin in the northern hemisphere of Mars that covers 40% of the planet. Chryse Planitia, the landing site of the Viking 1 lander, is a bay which opens into this basin.

One possible explanation for the basin's low, flat and relatively crater-free topography is that the basin was formed by a single large impact. Two simulations of a possible impact sketched a profile for the collision: low velocity (6 – 10 km/s), oblique angle and diameter 1,600 - 2,700 km. Topographical data from the Mars Global Surveyor are consistent with the models and also suggest that the elliptical crater has axes of length 10,600 km and 8,500 km, centered on 67°N, 208°E, though this has been partially obscured by later volcanic eruptions that created the Tharsis bulge along its rim. There is evidence for a secondary rim as well. This would make the North Polar Basin by far the largest impact crater in the Solar System, approximately four times the diameter of the next largest craters, the South Pole – Aitken basin on Earth's Moon and Hellas Planitia on the southern hemisphere of Mars.>>
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Re: APOD: A Colorful Side of the Moon (2011 Nov 18)

Post by orin stepanek » Fri Nov 18, 2011 2:28 pm

deathfleer wrote:I dont believe that it is one of the largest crater basin in the solar system, there should be many larger ones in the large planets.
The key word here is one of the largest crater basin! :wink:
Orin

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Re: APOD: A Colorful Side of the Moon (2011 Nov 18)

Post by Beyond » Fri Nov 18, 2011 2:29 pm

neufer wrote:
Beyond wrote:
That zoomify is a real hoot :!:

Well, i scoured the whole backside and didn't find any evidence of any Alien spaceships or bases.
That's because the aliens who inhabit the Far-side of the moon are all Flatlanders.

They are preparing this very moment to attack the internet, invade our computer screens and take over the world :!:
GOOD!! But in the condition this world is in... Will anyone really notice :?: :?:
To find the Truth, you must go Beyond.

Tszabeau

Re: APOD: A Colorful Side of the Moon (2011 Nov 18)

Post by Tszabeau » Fri Nov 18, 2011 3:03 pm

neufer wrote:
Beyond wrote: Well, i scoured the whole backside and didn't find any evidence of any Alien spaceships or bases.
That's because the aliens who inhabit the Far-side of the moon are all Flatlanders.

They are preparing this very moment to attack the internet, invade our computer screens and take over the world :!:
Perhaps Sublunareans?

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Re: APOD: A Colorful Side of the Moon (2011 Nov 18)

Post by gmPhil » Fri Nov 18, 2011 5:14 pm

[sings]
"When the moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie...."
[/sings]

islader2

Re: APOD: A Colorful Side of the Moon (2011 Nov 18)

Post by islader2 » Fri Nov 18, 2011 5:21 pm

LOLA? LOLA? What==no Kinks? :roll:

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Re: APOD: A Colorful Side of the Moon (2011 Nov 18)

Post by gmPhil » Fri Nov 18, 2011 6:07 pm

OK OK...
[sings]
Well I'm not dumb but I can't understand
Why it looks like a pizza but shines like a moon
[/sings]

(I guess I'd better not gice up the day job just yet...)

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Re: APOD: A Colorful Side of the Moon (2011 Nov 18)

Post by bystander » Fri Nov 18, 2011 6:11 pm

Click to play embedded YouTube video.
Know the quiet place within your heart and touch the rainbow of possibility; be
alive to the gentle breeze of communication, and please stop being such a jerk.
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Re: APOD: A Colorful Side of the Moon (2011 Nov 18)

Post by Beyond » Fri Nov 18, 2011 6:12 pm

Beyond wrote:When the moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie.... you're in Asterisk*
heh-heh, i don't have a day job
To find the Truth, you must go Beyond.

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Re: APOD: A Colorful Side of the Moon (2011 Nov 18)

Post by neufer » Fri Nov 18, 2011 6:16 pm

Tszabeau wrote:
neufer wrote:
Beyond wrote:
Well, i scoured the whole backside and didn't find any evidence of any Alien spaceships or bases.
That's because the aliens who inhabit the Far-side of the moon are all Flatlanders.
They are preparing this very moment to attack the internet, invade our computer screens and take over the world :!:
Sublunareans?
Sublunareans sending us sublunimal messages?
Art Neuendorffer

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Re: APOD: A Colorful Side of the Moon (2011 Nov 18)

Post by Beyond » Fri Nov 18, 2011 6:20 pm

Subtly!!
To find the Truth, you must go Beyond.

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Caloris Basin

Post by neufer » Fri Nov 18, 2011 6:36 pm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caloris_Basin wrote: <<The Caloris Basin, also called Caloris Planitia, is a large impact crater on Mercury about 1,550 km in diameter, one of the largest impact basins in the solar system. Caloris is Latin for heat and the basin is so-named because the Sun is almost directly overhead every second time Mercury passes perihelion.

The Caloris Basin was discovered on images taken by the Mariner 10 probe in 1974. It was situated on the terminator—the line dividing the daytime and nighttime hemispheres—at the time the probe passed by, and so half of the crater could not be imaged. Later, on January 15, 2008, one of the first photos of the planet taken by the MESSENGER probe revealed the crater in its entirety.

The crater was initially estimated to be about 1,300 km in diameter, though this was increased to 1,550 km based on subsequent images taken by MESSENGER. It is ringed by mountains up to 2 km high. Inside the crater walls, the floor of the crater is filled by lava plains, similar to the maria of the Moon. Outside the walls, material ejected in the impact which created the basin extends for 1,000 km, and concentric rings surround the crater.
Pantheon Fossae in Caloris Basin

In the center of the basin is a region containing numerous radial troughs that appear to be extensional faults, with a 40 km crater located near the center of the pattern. The exact cause of this pattern of troughs is not currently known.

Bodies in the inner solar system experienced a heavy bombardment of large rocky bodies in the first billion years or so of the solar system. The impact which created the Caloris Basin must have occurred after most of the heavy bombardment had finished, because fewer impact craters are seen on its floor than exist on comparably-sized regions outside the crater. Similar impact basins on the Moon such as the Mare Imbrium and Mare Orientale are believed to have formed at about the same time, possibly indicating that there was a 'spike' of large impacts towards the end of the heavy bombardment phase of the early solar system. Based on MESSENGER's photographs, Caloris' age has been determined to be between 3.8 and 3.9 billion years.

The giant impact believed to have formed Caloris may have had global consequences for the planet. At the exact antipode of the basin is a large area of hilly, grooved terrain, with few small impact craters that are known as the Chaotic Terrain (also 'Weird Terrain'). It is thought by some to have been created as seismic waves from the impact converged on the opposite side of the planet. Alternatively, it has been suggested that this terrain formed as a result of the convergence of ejecta at this basin’s antipode. This hypothetical impact is also believed to have triggered volcanic activity on Mercury, resulting in the formation of smooth plains. Surrounding Caloris Basin is a series of geologic formations thought to have been produced by the basin's ejecta, collectively called the Caloris Group.

Mercury has a very tenuous and transient atmosphere, containing small amounts of hydrogen and helium captured from the solar wind, as well as heavier elements such as sodium and potassium. These are thought to originate within the planet, being 'out-gassed' from beneath its crust. The Caloris Basin has been found to be a significant source of sodium and potassium, indicating that the fractures created by the impact facilitate the release of gases from within the planet. The Weird Terrain is also a source of these gases.>>
Art Neuendorffer

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Re: APOD: A Colorful Side of the Moon (2011 Nov 18)

Post by Ann » Fri Nov 18, 2011 7:20 pm

Art wrote:

That's because the aliens who inhabit the Far-side of the moon are all Flatlanders.
Click to play embedded YouTube video.
Ann
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Re: APOD: A Colorful Side of the Moon (2011 Nov 18)

Post by Beyond » Fri Nov 18, 2011 7:44 pm

Now... if we only had a Dr. Quantum in 4-D, to explain it to us 3-D-ers.
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Wolf Kotenberg

Re: APOD: A Colorful Side of the Moon (2011 Nov 18)

Post by Wolf Kotenberg » Fri Nov 18, 2011 8:25 pm

Wow, I wonder how many of those round ones are hits the Moon took instead of the Earth ?

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Re: APOD: A Colorful Side of the Moon (2011 Nov 18)

Post by Ann » Fri Nov 18, 2011 8:42 pm

Wolf Kotenberg wrote:Wow, I wonder how many of those round ones are hits the Moon took instead of the Earth ?
The Earth probably took more of those hits. But the Earth has got a few things that the Moon lacks, which have obliterated many of the scars.
Click to play embedded YouTube video.
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Re: APOD: A Colorful Side of the Moon (2011 Nov 18)

Post by Chris Peterson » Fri Nov 18, 2011 8:46 pm

Wolf Kotenberg wrote:Wow, I wonder how many of those round ones are hits the Moon took instead of the Earth ?
Only a very small percentage. Presumably, the vast majority of the cratering occurred during the Late Heavy Bombardment, about 4 billion years ago. Even though the Moon was much closer, it still only blocked a small part of the sky, and while it could shadow the Earth from some impacts, it also focused others which would not have occurred without its influence. At this time, the Earth was being hit with a "dinosaur killer" every century or so, and received tens of thousands of impacts that would have produced craters larger than 10 km. So I don't expect the Moon was much help! Good thing nothing was alive on Earth at the time.
Chris

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