Aristarchus, Herodotus and Schroteri's Valley
1/12/2014 10:51 PM
Check out these three fantastic looking features on the Moon's surface. Aristarchus is a very bright, very young crater. It is so bright it can be seen even when the section of Moon in which it is located is dark, but lit from earthshine. It is 45 kilometers across, and about 3,600 meters deep. Aristarchus was a Greek astronomer - he was the first to teach that the Earth orbits the Sun and rotates on its axis. (Continues below)
Immediately adjacent to Aristarchus is Herodotus, named for the Greek historian known as the "father of history." This is a lava-flooded crater, and therefore appears more flat and darker than Aristarchus. But the sinuous valley-cleft known as Vallis Schoteri (or Schroter's Valley) appears to start about 25 kilometers north of here, winding 200 kilometers in total length. It's deepest section is 1,000 meters. It appears like a dry river bed, but requires excellent atmospheric seeing and very high magnification to see detail here well.
More can be seen on the northeastern limb of the Moon early and into the middle part of this week thanks to favorable libration that allows observers to see Mare Humboldtianum, Mare Marginis, Mare Smythi, and other smaller features along here. Find out more in this video.