Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Taking A SMART Sidelong Look At Lunar Peak Of Eternal Light

Date:
October 3, 2008
Source:
Europlanet
Summary:
Three-dimensional views of the mountainous terrain surrounding a “peak of eternal light” near the Moon’s south pole have been released by the European Space Agency.

View of “Peak of Eternal Light” from the rim of the Shackleton Crater. The peak is along the ridge in the centre of the image. The possible landing sites 1 & 2 from the Clementine mosaic are in the bottom right hand corner of the image.
Credit: ESA/SMART-1/Space-X (Space Exploration Institute)

Three-dimensional views of the mountainous terrain surrounding a “peak of eternal light” near the Moon’s south pole have been released by the European Space Agency. Dr Detlef Koschny will present the images at the European Planetary Science Congress in Mόnster on Friday 26th September.

Images taken by the AMIE camera carried by ESA’s SMART-1 mission have been used to create digital elevation model of the peak, which is almost continuously exposed to sunlight.

“AMIE is not a stereo camera, so producing a 3-D model of the surface has been a challenge,” said Dr Koschny. “We’ve used a technique where we use the brightness of reflected light to determine the slope and, by comparing several images, put together a model that produces a shadow pattern that matches those observed by SMART-1.”

AMIE took a total of 113 images of the peak, located close to the rim of the Shackleton Crater which lies on the lunar south pole. In all but four of the images, the peak was illuminated by sunlight. This is of particular interest in planning future manned missions to the Moon, as it would mean that solar panels could be used almost constantly to generate an electricity supply for a lunar base.

In addition, the shadowed craters nearby are in constant darkness and may hold water ice deposited over millennia by cometary impacts and hydrogen and oxygen particles contained in the solar wind. This potential water supply would also be a vital resource for any lunar base.

The team, led by Dr Bjφrn Grieger of ESA’s European Space Astronomy Centre in Madrid, selected five of the AMIE images showing the peak illuminated from different angles. They mapped all the pixels onto a grid, defining the bright and dark areas. The data from the five images were then compared to produce estimates of the slope angles and the rendered elevation model was iteratively adjusted to produce a shadow match. The original AMIE images were then projected onto the retrieved model. To clearly visualise the topography, the elevation has been exaggerated five times.

SMART-1 orbited the Moon between November 2004 and September 2006, covering a full seasonal cycle.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Europlanet. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Europlanet. "Taking A SMART Sidelong Look At Lunar Peak Of Eternal Light." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 3 October 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/09/080926101223.htm>.
Europlanet. (2008, October 3). Taking A SMART Sidelong Look At Lunar Peak Of Eternal Light. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/09/080926101223.htm
Europlanet. "Taking A SMART Sidelong Look At Lunar Peak Of Eternal Light." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/09/080926101223.htm (accessed October 20, 2014).

Share This



More Space & Time News

Monday, October 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Latin America Launches Communications Satellite

Latin America Launches Communications Satellite

AFP (Oct. 17, 2014) — Argentina launches a home-built satellite, a first for Latin America. It will ride a French-made Ariane 5 rocket into orbit, and will provide cell phone, digital TV, Internet and data services to the lower half of South America. Duration: 00:41 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
This Week @ NASA, October 17, 2014

This Week @ NASA, October 17, 2014

NASA (Oct. 17, 2014) — Power spacewalk, MAVEN’s “First Light”, Hubble finds extremely distant galaxy and more... Video provided by NASA
Powered by NewsLook.com
Saturn's 'Death Star' Moon Might Have A Hidden Ocean

Saturn's 'Death Star' Moon Might Have A Hidden Ocean

Newsy (Oct. 17, 2014) — The smallest of Saturn's main moons, Mimas, wobbles as it orbits. Research reveals it might be due to a global ocean underneath its icy surface. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Comet Set for Rare Close Shave With Mars

Comet Set for Rare Close Shave With Mars

AFP (Oct. 16, 2014) — A fast-moving comet is about to shave by Mars for a once-in-a-million-years encounter that a flurry of spacecraft around the Red Planet hope to capture and photograph, NASA said. Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins