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Moonquakes are causing the moon to shrink over time

15 May 2019

But it's also a name that looks to the future, as a nod to NASA's five-year goal of landing a female astronaut as part of its planned mission to the lunar south pole. Then the data from the '60s and '70s was laid on top of the 2010 data to create an algorithm to better understand where the quakes were coming from.

A new paper in Nature Geoscience discusses these findings, which could collectively demonstrate that the Moon is not, in fact, a geologically dead world.

The data gathered from the Apollo 11, 12, 14, 15, and 16 missions showed that there had been 28 moonquakes between 1969 and 1977.

Each recorded quake was about a magnitude 2 to 5 on the Richter scale. They found that eight of those shallow quakes were located within 19 miles of thrust faults visible in LRO lunar images.

At least eight are linked to thrust faults that are formed as the moon shrinks.

Additionally, six of the eight moonquakes recorded near the faults occurred when the Moon was at its farthest point from Earth in its orbit - its apogee.

Quakes on Earth happen due to a very different reason.

"It's really remarkable to see how data from almost 50 years ago and from the LRO mission has been combined to advance our understanding of the moon while suggesting where future missions intent on studying the moon's interior processes should go", said Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) Project Scientist John Keller. NASA is requiring it to be reusable and integrated into two facilities that are in the works: a surface outpost, and what is being called the Lunar Gateway - a proposed office, laboratory and living space meant to orbit the moon.

These bright patches indicate they have been freshly exposed to space as would occur following a moonquake. But just how recently these faults were active was not known.

Similarly, tracks are apparent on slopes where boulders have been dislodged from perches on higher ground. The researchers surmised that if the scarps were only forming because of the Moon shrinking, there would be a global presence of lunar scarps.

A new study has found the moon may be shrinking - and shaking as it crunches down.

A team of geologists believe these cliff-like features are evidence of lunar tectonic activity.

Washington-The Moon is steadily shrinking, causing wrinkling on its surface and quakes, according to an analysis of imagery captured by NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) published Monday. "The moon's formation generated a lot of heat, and it has been gradually cooling off ever since". Detectors laid down by Apollo astronauts half a century ago revealed small shakes on the Moon, but their causes weren't well understood. These fault scarps appeared to be young - less than 50 million years old.

Bridenstine, a former Oklahoma GOP congressman, acknowledged that 2024 was chosen as the deadline in part so that the first human mission to the moon in more than 50 years would come while Trump was still in office.

Astronaut James Irwin, lunar module pilot, gives a military salute while standing beside the US flag during Apollo 15 lunar surface extravehicular activity (EVA) at the Hadley-Apennine landing site on the moon, August 1, 1971.

The decision to bolster NASA's budget had been announced earlier today in a series of tweets in which Mr Trump promised a new era of space exploration.

Moonquakes are causing the moon to shrink over time