Saturday, June 13, 2009

A New Era of Lunar Exploration

Everything old is new again.

The familiar telescopic Imbrian Age rectilinear fault Rupes Recta, or "straight wall," on the east bank of Mare Nubium, with far younger Copernican Age (1.1 billion year-old) companion crater Birt is seen as the unaided human eye would view it from lunar orbit, from Kaguya's NHK HDTV camera.

Dr. Carle Pieters, Deptartment of Geological Science
Brown University

"I am very excited about this new era of exploration that we are entering. The technical capability of the sensors, and the advancement with the young scientists that are becoming involved in the field are opening a new era of exploration. Lunar exploration is a long-term project."

"It probably has a hundred-year horizon. And we don't know what resources are going to be most useful. We don't know what application will be there a hundred years from now, but it will happen on that kind of time frame. And it's very encouraging to see that the international community is involved, that it's not just one country. I think the moon is one of the best examples of how different nations can work in a cooperative and peaceful manner on a highly technical activity."

Read JAXA feature story HERE.