The featured image shows the interior of a fresh impact crater (approximately 300 m in diameter) in the Mare Smythii region. In the high-sun image above, it is hard to recognize topographic features because there are no shadows. The wider view below, paired with a lower-sun image of the same crater on the right, gives a sharper view of small scale features such as boulders.
Interior of fresh impact crater in the Smythii region. Portion of image M126371530LE, scene width is 530 m Credit: NASA/Goddard/ASU
The floor of this small crater looks like a basket of impact-melt covered rocks, containing secrets about the age of recent impacts and the processes that cause their fresh rays to fade.
A wider view of the same fresh crater under high-sun (left, image M126371530LE, incidence angle of 21°) and lower sun image with illumination from the east (right, image M113392375LE, incidence angle of 50°) Credit: NASA/Goddard/ASU
Mare Smythii, located on the eastern limb of the Moon, contains relatively young (1-2 billion years old) basaltic lavas. The western portion of the region encompasses the crater Schubert C, the floor of which is fractured, possibly due to intrusions of lava beneath its surface.
WAC context image of the Mare Smythii region (40x40 km box is centered on the region), which includes the eastern portion of crater Schubert C. Arrow indicates the location of the fresh crater above. Image M115753790CE Credit: NASA/Goddard/ASU
Under high-sun, craters can take on an unusual appearance (left, M126371530LE). Under more typical illumination conditions, slumps of material and large boulders are revealed as the source of the high and low reflectance patterns (right, M113392375LE) Credit: NASA/Goddard/ASU
Mare Smythii contains many beautiful features, several of which are highlighted in high-sun images such as the one above.
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