A GIFT FOR THE HOLIDAY

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south up image by Oliver Pettenpaul, Germany

There are no turkeys nor pilgrims on the Moon, but we can be thankful that the Moon is there and that excellent imagers such as Oliver share their wonderful pictures of it. This one is of Drygalski, 150 km wide, and on the limb between Bailly and the south pole. Oliver points out that the relatively high illumination reduces the drama caused by long shadows, but shows the gentle slopes of the crater closer to how it really is. Craters are very shallow for their widths, and as we see here, their central peaks are almost always lower than their rims. The two bright craters on the opposite rim are on the farside of the Moon at about 95° to 100° W longitude. The shadow-casting peaks in the middle ground are apparently not part of the South Pole - Aitken Basin rim, and it is not clear if they are parts of a larger structure or simply high spots on the rims of inconspicuous craters. These mountains west of the pole are more poorly known than those to the east.

Chuck Wood
Today is Thanksgiving in the USA


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