Planets and Moons  ID: 4242

March 17, 2013 Lunar Impact Forms a New Crater

On March 17, 2013, a NASA telescope that monitors the night side of the Moon recorded a bright flash in Mare Imbrium, at about 21°N, 24°W. The flash was one of the brightest ever recorded, and it was caused by the impact of a meteoroid estimated to be roughly a foot (30 to 40 cm) wide and just under a hundred pounds (40 kg), hitting the Moon at 60,000 miles per hour (25 km/sec).

A few months after the impact, the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) camera team (LROC) found the crater formed by the impact. They compared LRO images taken before and after the impact and found a new crater 18 meters (60 feet) wide, with rays of ejecta that extend several kilometers.


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Visualization Credits

Ernie Wright (USRA): Lead Animator
Dan Gallagher (USRA): Producer
Mark Robinson (Arizona State University): Scientist
John Keller (NASA/GSFC): Scientist
Laurence Schuler (ADNET Systems, Inc.): Project Support
Ian Jones (ADNET Systems, Inc.): Project Support
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Data Used:
LRO/LOLA/Digital Elevation Map also referred to as: DEM
JPL DE421 also referred to as: DE421
Ephemeris - NASA/JPL
LRO/LROC/WAC 643nm High Sun Global Mosaic
Note: While we identify the data sets used in these visualizations, we do not store any further details nor the data sets themselves on our site.

This item is part of these series:
The Moon
LRO - Animations

DLESE >> Geology
SVS >> Lunar
DLESE >> Mineralogy or petrology
SVS >> Moon
GCMD >> Earth Science >> Solid Earth >> Rocks/Minerals >> Meteorites
SVS >> Hyperwall
SVS >> Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter
SVS >> Lunar Surface
SVS >> Lunar Topography
SVS >> Impactors
SVS >> Impact Crater
NASA Science >> Planets and Moons
SVS >> Presentation

GCMD keywords can be found on the Internet with the following citation: Olsen, L.M., G. Major, K. Shein, J. Scialdone, S. Ritz, T. Stevens, M. Morahan, A. Aleman, R. Vogel, S. Leicester, H. Weir, M. Meaux, S. Grebas, C.Solomon, M. Holland, T. Northcutt, R. A. Restrepo, R. Bilodeau, 2013. NASA/Global Change Master Directory (GCMD) Earth Science Keywords. Version