Swirls near Mare Marginis on the eastern limb (20˚N, 90˚E) of the Moon.  This region hosts magnetic anomalies, grooved terrain, and is antipodal to the youngest basin on the Moon, Orientale.  The origin of lunar swirls is still unknown.

Swirling Controversy

The origins of strange swirl-like markings on the lunar surface are still mysterious.

Cartoon showing the interaction of the solid Moon with the particles, fields and dust that make up the lunar exosphere.

A Dust Cloud Around the Moon

Who ever said that space is empty?

The far side of the Moon, a mosaic of Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter wide-angle camera images.

China and the “Dark Side”

A proposed Chinese mission to the Moon’s hidden hemisphere.

A way station and staging area for human missions to Mars and other deep space destinations could be positioned at an Earth-Moon libration point. This artwork shows a staging node at L-1.

The Lunar “Distraction”

Far from being a detour, the Moon is a critical stepping stone to Mars.

Science Publishing -- Some Skepticism Required

Although the volume of published scientific papers is increasing, fewer and fewer may actually be read.


Yutu Peers Inside the Moon

Data from the Chinese Chang’E 3 lander show what’s under the lunar surface.


Ancient Life on the Moon — From Earth

The possibility that terrestrial fossils are preserved in Moon rocks makes lunar exploration even more appealing.

Dr. B. Ray Hawke on the rim of Kilauea Caldera, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, 1984.

B. Ray Hawke, Lunar Geologist

Remembering a valued collaborator and friend.


The Mystery of Lunar Layers

Stratigraphy on the Moon is key to understanding its geological history.

Artist's conception of the Orion spacecraft and Delta upper stage in orbit during the EFT-1 (Exploration Flight Test-1) test scheduled for December 4.

The Flight of Orion

A new spacecraft takes flight, but to where?

A view of the Earth-Moon system from the Chang’E 5 Test mission.  The large dark area near the center of the Moon’s far side is Mare Moscoviense.

China is Now Positioned to Dominate the Moon

What are they up to?

Ina, an unusual depression about 3 km across near the center of the near side of the Moon. The smooth areas appear to lie on top of the rough surface; analysis of this feature suggests an age of about 30 million years, astonishingly young in lunar terms.

Lunar Volcanism: How Recent is Recent?

New work suggests that lavas were erupted on the Moon less than 100 million years ago.

Start at the Apollo 11 landing site, end at the North Pole.

A Road Trip on the Moon

Sightseeing tips for a lunar vacation

Sawn slab of NWA5000, a meteorite identified as coming from the Moon. Note the large white clasts (click here for the full-size photo) ; these are igneous rocks, similar to others recognized from the lunar highlands. Note the small brown grains of metal (kamacite) in the white rocks, surrounded by dark brown stains (rust). Metal grains found in igneous crustal rocks are virtually unknown in the Apollo samples.

Undocumented Alien

Meteorite NWA5000 is beautiful – but is it from the Moon?

Asteroid 253 Mathilde, as seen by the Shoemaker-NEAR spacecraft in 1997. This asteroid is a C-type, which is the likely class of object to contain chemically bound water.

Moon First—Mine the Asteroids Later

Let’s learn how to extract space resources closer to home.

Earth prototype of the Resource Prospector rover (carrying the RESOLVE payload) and lander during recent field tests at Mauna Kea, Hawaii.

Prospecting the Moon’s Poles

An early look at NASA plans to start assaying lunar resources.

The Apollo 15 Lunar Roving Vehicle at the edge of the sinuous Rima Hadley, July 30, 1971.

Apollo 15 and The Power of Inspiration

Finding a career in the mountains of the Moon

The far side of the Moon from two spacecraft. The Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (left) mapped the far side at a variety of sun angles, allowing us to observe the morphology of the surface. Clementine mapped the Moon at high sun angles, emphasizing albedo contrasts. Both views show that this side of the Moon has much less dark, smooth maria than does the near side.

Fifty Shades of Darkness

A new explanation of the Moon’s early history is more confusing than illuminating.


Gordon Swann, Geology Teacher to the Astronauts

Remembering a pioneer of lunar exploration.

Newly obtained image of Earthrise over the north pole of the Moon, taken by the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter spacecraft.

Earth Rising

Earth as seen from the Moon is always in the same place – true or false? It depends.

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