Gravity Map

Free air gravity map of the Moon.  Credit: NASA

Free air gravity map of the Moon. Credit: NASA

Here is a gravity map of the Moon’s southern area made from data collected by the GRAIL (Gravity Recovery and Interior Laboratory) by S. Goossens and others.

Because the moon is not a smooth homogeneous sphere of equal altitude, gravity varies from area to area, just as it does here on Earth. The GRAIL spacecraft was able to measure gravitational differences from what would occur of the Moon was like a cue ball. The differences are expressed by color, in this case purple is the low end of the range, yellow is average and red is at the high end.

Get an more in-depth explanation at NASA Goddared Space Fight Center’s photostream at Flickr (along with other pictures).

2 thoughts on “Gravity Map

  1. I was fortunate to be invited to the launch of the GRAIL probes at KSC. We saw presentations on the probes and met scientists working on the project. One of the celebrities there was Neil deGrasse Tyson. He gave a talk to the group and the morning of the launch he hung out with us. It was a thrill to meet and spend time with him. I’m now glad to see the results of the GRAIL project.

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