Note: Each marker is immediately below the referenced point of interest so as not to obscure it from view.
The Moon has accompanied our planet in its orbit for billions of years. Spared from atmospheric erosion, its surface charts a pristine geological (or rather ‘selenological’) record of Solar System history, from massive scale volcanism to catastrophic, seemingly apocalyptic bombardment from space.
The rugged surface catches the light of the Sun, and casts dynamic and intricate shadow patterns throughout the Lunar Month, about 29.5 days. If we look at the Moon from one night to the next, we can see its various craters, mountains and plains illuminated from different angles, giving us a tremendous sense of 3D during the mornings and evenings local to those features.
Scanning along the Moon’s terminator – the line where day meets night – is arguably the best way to get familiar with this fascinating landscape, but you’ll need a telescope for best results. Even a small telescope will produce awe-inspiring images.
Image courtesy of NASA