I didn’t get out to start viewing that Saturday until around 11:30pm or so and by then the Moon had risen in the south east and was quite low to the horizon. Not only was it low but it was roughly 90% full, only three days after the full moon and the long 100 minute Lunar Eclipse witnessed by South America, Africa, and Europe on June 15. So because of the moon being so bright and washing out the southern sky where I had planned on doing my viewing of Sagittarius and Scorpius I decided to dedicate my viewing time to our own natural satellite – The Moon. I have taken many pictures since December of The Moon but never any close up highly magnified pictures, so of course I took a couple that night. It’s about time I start to learn the moon a bit. You know what it means when I go out and learn something right? That’s right, you get to learn it to by reading about it here. I wanted to make this post that Sunday, but I was having a hard time identifying what I was looking at, then all of a sudden it hit me, I need to take my images and flip them upside down and reverse them in order for them to match up with the picture of the moon I was using.
Then I needed to figure out how to use the free program I downloaded called Virtual Moon Atlas. I came across the function to change the time and date on the program, which is usually set to the current time and date showing the current moon phase the exact same way you would see it if you stepped out and looked up at the moon. So I set it for June 18 at 11:30pm and there it was matching right up with the full picture of the moon I had taken, then with that I started hunting for my close up images of the crater on the moon picture I took, then finding it on the moon atlas.
Each of these craters has multiple parts, A’s, B’s, C’s, 1’s, 2’s and so on so I labeled just the main crater and the rest are in the surrounding areas. These craters are in the South-East quadrant of the moon in the Vallis Rheita region.
Brenner – Is a crater that is 59×59 miles wide and 10,000 feet high. Steep slopes to the West and supporting Metius to the South-East. Brenner is named after the 19th century Austrian astronomer, Spiridon Gopčević or Leo Brenner. Brenner was an amateur observer of the Moon and Planets.
Metius – Is a crater that is 53×53 miles wide and 9,100 feet high. Very steep slopes riddled with craters and supporting Fabricius to the South-West. Flat floor with a small central mountain. The crater is named after Adriaan Adriaanszoon (also called Metius from the dutch word meten which means measurer or surveyor) who was a 17th century dutch mathematician and astronomer born in the Netherlands. Metius was a Dutch geometer and astronomer.
Fabricius – Is a crater 47×47 miles wide and 7,600 feet high. It features high walls with terraces and flat floor and two rectilinear and parallel mountain chains. Named after the 16th century German astronomer, David Goldschmidt (Fabricius). Fabricius is the Latinized version of Goldschmidt. Goldschmidt was the discoverer of the variability of the star Mira Ceti, and was the first observer of spots of the sun in 1610.
Lockyer – Is a crater 21×21 miles wide and 11,200 feet high. Steep slopes with high walls and a flat floor. Named after 19th century English science and astronomer Sir Joseph Norman Lockyer. Lockyer is credited for discovering the gas helium, and the founder of the first editor of the journal, Nature
Janssen – Has multiple parts to it many of which are craterlets. Janssen 1 is a dome with extrusive volcanism quite large. Named after 19th century French astronomer and physicist, Pierre Jules César Janssen. Janssen along with Lockyer is credited for discovering the gas helium.
Steinheil – Is a crater 41×41 miles wide and 9,100 feet high. Steep slopes, very high walls with terraces, flat floor filled with lava, wrinkles ridges and crevices. Named after 19th century German Physicist, Carl August von Steinheil. Steinheil was a physicist, inventor, engineer and astronomer;
Watt – Is a crater that is 40×40 miles wide and 9,100 feet high. High walls with terraces, tormented floor with a craterlet to the South-West. Named after 18th century Scottish engineer, James Watt. Watt worked on the vaporization of water and improved the steam engine.
Macrobius – Is a crater 39×39 miles wide and 11,200 feet high. Steep slopes with very high walls with terraces. Flat floor and central mountain and hills. Named after 5th century Roman writer, Ambrosius Theodosius Macrobius. Macrobius worked on Latin grammar and the author of a collection of poems called the “Saturnales”.
Tisserand – Is a crater 22×22 miles wide (unsure of it’s height). High walls with terraces overlapped by a craterlet to the North-East, also has a flat floor. Named after French astronomer, François Tisserand.
And that’s only 9 of the craters on the moon! Reading about all the craters and the people they’re named after was quite interesting. Definitely going to continue learning craters when I can. So much to look at in the night sky, so little time.