Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera

Central Peak Bedrock

The sun casts long shadows on the central peak of Theophilus crater. LROC NAC M135019514R, image width is 700 m [NASA/GSFC/Arizona State University].

Theophilus is a large 102 km diameter crater located at 11.4°S, 26.4°E. Like many other complex craters, it has terraced walls, a flat floor, and a large central peak. The Theophilus central peak even has abundant exposed rocks at its summit! The impact process excavates material from depth, and the deepest material forms the central peak. This exposed rock must then be lunar crustal rock weathering out of the central peak! Future explorers may sample these rocks from talus fields at the base of the peak. Since they are from the deepest material now exposed in the crater, valuable information about the three dimensional nature of the crust would be readily at hand.

Context image of today's featured image, located in the red box. Image width is 140 km [NASA/GSFC/Arizona State University].

Are there more exposed rocks in the full NAC frame? 

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