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DC Agle 818-393-9011
IMAGE ADVISORY: 2008-239 Dec. 16, 2008
NASA Instrument Inaugurates 3-D Moon Imaging
The Moon Mineralogy Mapper is the first instrument to provide highly uniform imaging of the lunar surface. Along with the length and width dimensions across a typical image, the instrument analyzes a third dimension – color.
This two-image figure, and other data from NASA's Moon Mineralogy Mapper Instrument can be found at: http://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA11727.
The composite image consists of a subset of Moon Mineralogy Mapper data for the Orientale region. The image strip on the left is a color composite of data from 28 separate wavelengths of light reflected from the moon. The blue to red tones reveal changes in rock and mineral composition, and the green color is an indication of the abundance of iron-bearing minerals such as pyroxene. The image strip on the right is from a single wavelength of light that contains thermal emission, providing a new level of detail on the form and structure of the region's surface.
The Moon Mineralogy Mapper provides scientists their first opportunity to examine lunar mineralogy at high spatial and spectral resolution.
"The Moon Mineralogy Mapper provides us with compositional information across the moon that we have never had access to before," said Carle Pieters, the instrument's principal investigator, from Brown University in Providence, R.I. "Our ability to now identify and map the composition of the surface in geologic context provides a new level of detail needed to explore and understand Earth’s nearest neighbor."
The Moon Mineralogy Mapper was selected as a Mission of Opportunity through the NASA Discovery Program. Carle Pieters of