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Moon: NASA's Lunar Portal
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Moon Facts
Moon Fact
Long Gone

There are no active volcanoes on the moon now. The moon's volcanoes have been extinct for billions of years.

EYES on LADEE: Explore the Moon in 3D
Moon Facts
Snow Moon

Native Americans referred to February's full moon as "Snow Moon." This is due to the cold and snowy weather typically found during the month of February.

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.

One Small Step ...

In 2009, a NASA team restored the first grainy video of Neil Armstrong's first step on the moon.

Heavyweight

Total weight: of the moon is 74 sextillion km (that's 81 quintillion tons).

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.

Earthrise

Seeing the Earth rise from the moon never gets old.

Ancient Rocks

Moon-rock ages range from about 3.2 billion years in the maria (dark, low basins) to nearly 4.6 billion years in the terrae (light, rugged highlands). Active geologic forces, including plate tectonics and erosion, continuously repave the oldest surfaces on Earth whereas old surfaces persist with little disturbance on the moon.

Tiny Temblors

"Moonquakes" are millions of times less powerful than earthquakes.

Long Road

It would take 135 days to drive by car to the moon at 70 mph.

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

Between 1969 and 1972 six Apollo missions brought back 382 kg (842 pounds) of lunar rocks, core samples, pebbles, sand and dust from the lunar surface. In addition, three automated Soviet spacecraft returned important samples totaling 300 g (approximately 3/4 pound).

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.

Massive Impact Basin

Did you know the largest impact basin in the Earth-moon system is the South-Pole-Aitken basin on the moon measuring 2,500 km in diameter?

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.

Deep Impact

The moon's deepest craters are 4,500 m (15,000 feet). The South Pole-Aitken basin on the moon is an abyss that could engulf the United States from the East Coast through Texas.

Don't Forget Your Space Suit

The moon is 239,000 miles away from the Earth. It would take almost nine years to walk there.

Weightless? Not Quite

Gravity on the moon is only 1/6 of that found on Earth.

First Interaction with the Moon

In 1940, the Diana Project was the first experiment to successfully bounce radio signals off the moon.

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).

Moon Dust

The moon's surface is covered by a pile of rock fragments and dust called lunar regolith. The thickness of the regolith varies from about 5 m on mare surfaces to about 10 m on highland surfaces.

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Last Updated: 11 Jul 2013