Mahesh Anand on What Human Return to the Moon Means for Lunar Geology
Listen now
Description
We have learned a great deal about the geology of the Moon from remote sensing instruments aboard lunar orbiters, from robot landers, from the Apollo landings, and from samples returned to the Earth by Apollo and robot landings. But in 2025, when NASA plans to land humans on the Moon for the first time since 1972, a new phase of lunar exploration is expected to begin. What will this mean for our understanding of the origin, evolution, and present structure of the Moon? A lot, according to Mahesh Anand. For example, as he explains in the podcast, satellite imagery suggests that volcanism continued for much longer than was previously thought, perhaps until as recently as 100 million years ago. In-situ inspection and sample return should help us explain this surprising finding. Mahesh Anand is Professor of Planetary Science and Exploration at the Open University, UK.
More Episodes
At roughly 15-25-million-year intervals since the Archean, huge volumes of lava have spewed onto the Earth’s surface. These form the large igneous provinces, which are called flood basalts when they occur on continents. As Richard Ernst explains in the podcast, the eruption of a large igneous...
Published 04/10/24
Published 04/10/24
Perhaps as many as five times over the course of Earth history, most of the continents gathered together to form a supercontinent. The supercontinents lasted on the order of a hundred million years before breaking apart and dispersing the continents. For decades, we theorized that this cycle of...
Published 02/24/24