The lunar earthquakes could jeopardize future missions

When people return to the moon, they will have to be careful the landing place. Because, no matter how serene the world seemed to us the Moon from the Earth, in fact, the satellite of our planet is very troubled. Tectonic activity leads to the fact that “lootrisone” happen quite often, as the scientists write in a paper published in Nature Geoscience. We know that the Moon shudders as on the surface placed four seismometer installed in the latter stages of the program “Apollo“.

Are there any on the moon earthquakes? How!

These tools were decommissioned in 1977, but in seven years, while the seismometers were working, they checked the 28 lunar earthquakes with magnitudes ranging from 1.5 to 5 on the Richter scale. A five-point earthquake might damage a spacecraft or a lunar base nearby.

There are a number of theories about the causes of earthquakes, including a collision with a meteor or the gravitational influence of Earth and Sun. A group of scientists re-analyzed the data together with the analysis of images obtained by Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter after launch in 2009.

Circling around the moon, Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter took pictures of its surface using a precision camera. Analysis of the images shows that the lunar surface is covered with small, shallow, rocky features: cracks and fissures.

According to Thomas Watters’, senior researcher of the research Center of the Earth and planets in Washington, who led the team that cracked the scattered craters that are less than 50 million years, so must be relatively recent. The images also show that the lunar boulders have shifted in recent decades, which indicates seismic activity.

This study also sheds some light on the internal structure of the moon. Since the moon has no plate tectonics like on Earth, it is believed that moon quakes caused by the cooling of the interior of the moon, and the earth’s gravity.

However, small lunar quakes can indicate that the moon has a warm and perhaps even the molten core. And this despite the General scientific rule is that the smaller rocky body cools faster, says Watters.

Currently, NASA is working to return people to the moon by 2024. The Agency will have to consider the possibility of lunar quakes, not to accidentally settle in the “active” region.

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