Have you ever pondered about the topography of the moon’s surface? Well I have. My brain works in weird and wacky ways. So naturally before we expose what the moon’s surface actually looks like, you need to see what the moon would look if you were on acid. courtesy of The Mighty Boosh.
Previously, we saw a meteor that looks like and email from space. So now let’s look at two moons rendered in beautiful splashes of colour like a Jackson Pollock painting.
As the most fascinating and brightest object in our night sky, the Moon has 11,000 craters that are visible even on a small telescope. Since it begun circling our earth 4.5 billion years ago, the Moon has become an important part of our human history and fables. It has been conquered as well firstly by the Americans, then the Russians, Chinese and Japanese. Older than all of us, it’s got a lot to teach us if we listen with our eyes to its soft glow. Click on the photo to see the larger version.
Ganymede: Our Solar System’s Biggest Moon
This is an animation of Jupiter’s moon Ganymede, with a geologic map superimposed over a global color mosaic. The 37-second animation begins as a global color mosaic image of the moon then quickly fades into the geologic map. Click on the photo to see the larger version.
The seventh moon out from Jupiter, Ganymede is roughly the same size as Mercury, making it the largest moon in our solar system.
The crust of Ganymede is filled with water, salt, ice and silicate rock. Other organic compounds such as sulphur dioxide and carbon dioxide are also present on this moon. The surface is made up of ancient craters and younger grooved areas. The reason for the topography is still up for debate, but the generally accepted opinion is that the grooves and craters are caused by tectonic activity at Ganymede’s core. Unlike almost all other moons, Ganymede also has a substantial magnetosphere. This means that this moon is theoretically inhabitable with life, as the magnetosphere protects life from the harmful solar rays.
We still haven’t explored the surface yet, we have only taken pictures from satellites. It’s still a mystery, perhaps there are aliens living on it! The measurement of planetary habitability and the scientific requirements required to support life is too complex to get into here, but you can read more about it on Wikipedia.
Infoaesthetics: Stunning Art or Infographic? Both
Infoaesthetics: Lunar Composition Map
Stay tuned as next week we explore topographical maps more closer to home…