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Moon: NASA's Lunar Portal
Moon Facts
Moon Fact
Bright Names

The light, rugged highlands of the moon are called the "terrae."

EYES on LADEE: Explore the Moon in 3D
Moon Facts
Our Drifting Moon

Did you know the moon is moving away from the Earth at a rate of 1.5 inches per year?

Read More

Stuffed Crust

The crust on the far side of the moon is thicker than the crust on the near side.

The far side highlands appear to have formed early in the moon's history, when a magma ocean (shaped by tides caused by Earth's gravity) heated the moon's floating crust non-uniformly. Since then, the magma ocean has solidified.

Mighty Minotaur

LADEE will be launched on an five-stage Minotaur V rocket. The first three stages of the Minotaur V are former Peacekeeper ballistic solid rocket motors. The fourth and fifth stages are commercial motors.

Once in a Blue Moon

About every 2.5 years an extra full moon, called a "Blue Moon" occurs.

The term Blue Moon is believed to have originated in 1883 after the eruption of Krakatoa. The volcano put so much dust in the atmosphere that the moon actually looked blue in color. This was so unusual that the term "once in a Blue Moon" was coined.

Perfect Crater

Linné crater is extremely young, and to a scientist's eye pretty close to perfect. Linné is a beautifully preserved young mare crater.

NASA's Planetary CSI: Crater Science Investigations: Linné Crater

Communication with LADEE

Unlike past missions, LADEE will be using lasers instead of radio waves to communicate with mission control.

Moon Day

A lunar day (or the time it takes from sunrise to sunrise) on the moon is approximately 708 hours.

First Step

The first human being walked on the moon on 20 July 1969.

Seeing Seas

The face of the moon is marked by regions, called mare (Latin for "sea"). Galileo, who thought the dark featureless areas were bodies of water, named these regions. We now know them to be basalt (a type of lava) filled impact basins.

Moon Gods

Most ancient religions had a moon god or goddess. One Roman moon goddess was named Luna, and this is why many modern words associated with the moon have "Luna" as their root.

Moon Rocks

Rocks from the moon are similar to three kinds of igneous rocks that are found here on Earth: basalt, anorthosites and breccias.

Familiar Face

Only about 59 percent of the moon's surface is visible to us here on Earth.

Surface Boundary Exosphere

The atmosphere of the moon, called a surface boundary exosphere, is likely the same type of atmosphere found on many other planets.

Prince of Tides

There are two high tides and two low tides every day on every beach on Earth. This is due to the moon's pull.

Constant Companion

It takes about a month for the moon to orbit Earth (27.3 days to complete a revolution, but 29.5 days to change phases from new moon to new moon).

Original Rocks

The rocks of the terrae (the light colored, rugged highlands of the moon) are nearly 4.6 billion years old.

Even Dozen

Only 12 people have ever walked on the surface of the moon.

Hot Rocks

All moon rocks originated through high-temperature processes with little or no involvement with water.

Shaping the Moon

Between 4.5 and 4.3 billion years ago, a giant object hit the moon near its south pole and formed the South Pole-Aitken Basin, one of the two largest proven impact basins in the solar system.

Two NASA LRO Videos: "Evolution of the Moon" and "A Tour of the Moon."

The Wolf Moon

When the snows were deep in January, wolf packs would often howl near Native American villages, prompting the title "full wolf moon" for the first full moon in January (according to climatologist Brent McRoberts of Texas A&M University).

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