UNKNOWN RILLE?

LPOD-Mar4-12.jpg
image by Mario Weigand, Offenbach am Main / Germany

Mario must have had a magical night of imaging on March 1 for he has uploaded to the LPOD Photo Gallery 13 fantastic images
including this dramatic view of Eratosthenes. This image highlights the radiating ridges and valleys of the crater's continuous ejecta
blanket. But what immediately astonished me was the faint rille along the eastern edge of the image. I don't remember noticing this
before and don't see it on any other Photo Gallery images. It is visible on the LRO Quick Map, but the higher Sun makes it less
conspicuous. This is a continuation of Rima Bode which was the source for the Moon's largest pyroclastic deposit, but there is no
darkening around this piece of rille so perhaps pyroclastics did not erupt from it. The rille is interupted in one spot, suggesting that
younger lavas buried it. I wonder why the rille abruptly changed direction when it entered the mare. Or is this very thin rille part of an
older circumferential system associated with the putative Aestuum Basin? Each image that better shows a delicate feature tells us
more about the Moon, but often raises new questions too. That is why wonderful images like this are so exciting to examine.

Chuck Wood

Related Links
R√ľkl plate 12
Mario's website


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