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Moon: NASA's Lunar Portal
Moon Facts
Moon Fact
First Step

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

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

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.

Original Rocks

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

Moon Water

In 2009, orbiting spacecraft discovered water molecules on the moon.

The Moon's Earth-like Core

Research suggests the moon possesses a solid, iron-rich inner core with a radius of nearly 150 miles and a fluid, primarily liquid-iron outer core with a radius of roughly 205 miles. Where it differs from Earth is a partially molten boundary layer around the core estimated to have a radius of nearly 300 miles.

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.

A Closer Look

This close-up image of the lunar surface is from the Luna 9 lander in the Oceanus Procellarum. This is the first image from the surface of the moon.

Tiny Temblors

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

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

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).

Moon Rocks

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

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.

How the Moon Was Formed

The moon was formed ~4.5 billion years ago (about 30-50 million years after the origin of our solar system) out of debris thrown into orbit by a massive collision between a smaller proto-Earth and another planetoid, about the size of Mars.

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.

Friendly Face

Many of us see a man in the moon -- a human face smiling down at us from the lunar surface. Scientists say the fact that we see a face may be the result of the rate at which the moon slowed down before becoming locked into its current orientation.

Weightless? Not Quite

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

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

Lunar Mascons

Mass is not distributed uniformly inside the moon. Large mass concentrations ("mascons") lie beneath the surface of many large lunar basins and probably represent thick accumulations of dense lava. Relative to its geometric center, the moon's center of mass is displaced toward Earth by several kilometers.

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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