Print 26 comment(s) - last by Alexvrb.. on Dec 22 at 7:41 PM

Single laser pulse will help scientist develop topographic map.

The mysterious polar craters of the moon, often hidden in shadow,  will soon be shown in a new light.  NASA scientists are currently working to offer up illuminating details of their topography for the first time with the most precise and complete map to date, thanks to NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter and the Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter (LOLA). 

According to NASA's web page, LOLA, which is on board the LRO spacecraft, works by propagating a single laser pulse through a Diffractive Optical Element that splits it into five beams. The beams strike and are backscattered from the lunar surface. From the return pulse, the LOLA electronics determines the time of flight which, accounting for the speed of light, provides a precise measurement of the range from the spacecraft to the lunar surface.

"Recent papers have clarified some aspects of lunar processes based solely on the more precise topography provided by the new LOLA maps such as lunar crater density and resurfacing by impacts, or the formation of multi-ring basins," said Dr. Gregory Neumann of NASA's Maryland Goddard Space Flight Center."

The new maps are more accurate and sample more places on the moon.

"The LOLA data also allow us to define the current and historical illumination environment on the moon," said Neumann. 

Vital to finding places that have been shaded for long periods of time, lunar illumination history will help scientists with discovering areas that act like cold storage and are capable of accumulating and preserving volatile material like water ice.  They are generally in deep craters near the lunar poles.

"Until LRO and the recent Japanese Kaguya mission, we had no idea of what the extremes of polar crater slopes were," said Neumann.

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By NanoTube1 on 12/20/2010 4:23:46 PM , Rating: 3
...where are the alien bases and structures on the moon? why are NASA hiding this from the public?!

RE: But...
By cenobite9 on 12/20/2010 4:31:41 PM , Rating: 2
and how long before Google buys the imagery to add to their Google Earth/Moon/Mars?

RE: But...
By CharonPDX on 12/20/2010 4:39:41 PM , Rating: 2
Well, if the imagery is generated by a NASA (aka government)-funded mission, created by government employees, then it's public domain already. Google just needs to ask for it.

They already have an elevation view, and 3D terrain in Google Earth, so this would just be a refinement of that.

RE: But...
By DougF on 12/20/2010 5:29:44 PM , Rating: 3
Google can get the data...eventually. NASA often holds such data for a specified time to allow the research institutions working with this program to have "first shot" at creating papers, announcing discoveries, etc. It depends on the agreement with the particular institution as to how long NASA holds the basic data. Even then, the data may be in a unique format and require translation to be usable in the public domain.

RE: But...
By fic2 on 12/20/2010 5:51:01 PM , Rating: 2
I'm hoping my Garmin lifetime maps includes moon maps.

RE: But...
By fteoath64 on 12/21/2010 8:14:00 AM , Rating: 3
What for ?. You aint got a saucer that can fly there. And neither would he greys take you there on their ships. If they did in the past, your memory was wiped so you ain't any wiser.

RE: But...
By Ammohunt on 12/20/2010 4:57:05 PM , Rating: 5
Look to see more info on this topic on WikiLeaks.

RE: But...
By amanojaku on 12/20/2010 4:58:49 PM , Rating: 3
Fool. There are no structures on the moon. How is it supposed to hold a building when it's made of green cheese?

RE: But...
By NanoTube1 on 12/20/2010 5:22:43 PM , Rating: 3
I fail to see the connection.
A moon made of cheese is only logical in a galaxy named the "milky way" and it is green because it was left outside by God for too long. As a result, it is covered with Penicillium which reflects the greenish part of the light spectrum generated by the sun.

Nevertheless, it has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that the aliens are there and NASA are air-brushing their bases!

RE: But...
By delphinus100 on 12/20/2010 9:09:02 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah, didn't the Dragon capsule snag a sample of it..?

RE: But...
By HypocriteWatch on 12/20/2010 10:21:32 PM , Rating: 2
That's exactly what I was thinking! Then I started thinking about how cold it was (on one side) and how the cheese would be preserved. Then I started thinking about how the other side is very warm, and how the cheese would melt.
Then I stopped thinking entirely. To complex a problem - or just too much thinking!

RE: But...
By ARoyalF on 12/20/2010 10:32:38 PM , Rating: 2
It's quite simple really. Where do you think Velveeta comes from?

That said, where's my Google Moon?

RE: But...
By JediJeb on 12/21/2010 2:53:46 PM , Rating: 2
Google is waiting for permission to start the rover trips for the new Crater View site, I just wonder what kind of information they will pick up from the unprotected alien networks there ;)

RE: But...
By Alexvrb on 12/22/2010 7:36:25 PM , Rating: 2
Or if they'll post pictures of alien underwear for all to see. Personally I doubt it, with the recent Earth lawsuit.

RE: But...
By YashBudini on 12/21/2010 9:07:15 PM , Rating: 2
Fool. There are no structures on the moon.

Obviously you never purchased Pink Floyd's LP "Dark Side of the Moon."

RE: But...
By fteoath64 on 12/21/2010 8:11:16 AM , Rating: 1
That confounded and obsolete "Brookings Report 1959" that's why. Also, because those bases do not belong to earth humans, so USA is afraid to show what "they cannot logically explain".

People got to learn to RV these places as they are fascinating to understand but not for your average person who just wants to live in ignorance.

PS: Even China and Japan did not show these revealing bases and other anomalies of ancient sites on the moon.

RE: But...
By NanoTube1 on 12/21/2010 12:06:22 PM , Rating: 2
So who in your opinion built these moon bases?
The Greys? the Reptilians?

RE: But...
By YashBudini on 12/21/2010 9:09:17 PM , Rating: 2
I thought it was pretty obvious,


RE: But...
By Alexvrb on 12/22/2010 7:41:23 PM , Rating: 2
Oh crap, I wasted all that time scanning the moon for resources and just when I finally found that rich Element Cheese deposit I realized I didn't buy any probes before I left the Serpent Nebula. Blast it!

"Well, we didn't have anyone in line that got shot waiting for our system." -- Nintendo of America Vice President Perrin Kaplan
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