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Moon: NASA's Lunar Portal
Return to Solar System Exploration
Moon Facts
Moon Fact
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.

EYES on LADEE: Explore the Moon in 3D
Moon Facts
Genesis Rock

The age of the oldest rock collected by the Apollo astronauts is 4.5 billion years old.

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.

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.

First Interaction with the Moon

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

Out of Shape

The moon is not round, but is in fact egg-shaped with the large end pointed towards Earth.

Stuffed Crust

The crust on the far side of the moon is thicker than the crust on the near side.

The far side highlands appear to have formed early in the moon's history, when a magma ocean (shaped by tides caused by Earth's gravity) heated the moon's floating crust non-uniformly. Since then, the magma ocean has solidified.

Moonquakes

There are two types of earthquakes that happen on the moon: deep moonquakes and shallow moonquakes.

Moon Day

A lunar day (or the time it takes from sunrise to sunrise) on the moon is approximately 708 hours.

Earth Lashing

Every month when the moon gets a lashing from Earth's magnetic tail. This has consequences ranging from lunar "dust storms" to electrostatic discharges.

Space Face

Can you spot the face of the man on the moon?

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

Inverted Moon

As the astronomical telescope with its inverted image came into use, astronomers adopted the habit of representing the way they saw the moon -- upside down. This practice was followed until very recently. Lunar images are now constructed and stored digitally and can be displayed at any orientation. The moon is now typically shown right side up.

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.

Weightless? Not Quite

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

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.

Who's the Bunny Girl on the Moon?

Apollo 11 Buzz Aldrin to Mission Control, "Okay. We'll keep a close eye out for the bunny girl."

What was he talking about?

Find out here.

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.

Shaping the Moon

Between 4.5 and 4.3 billion years ago, a giant object hit the moon near its south pole and formed the South Pole-Aitken Basin, one of the two largest proven impact basins in the solar system.

Two NASA LRO Videos: "Evolution of the Moon" and "A Tour of the Moon."

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Last Updated: 11 Jul 2013