Preliminary results from China's Chang'E-3 (CE-3) spacecraft and its rover, Yutu, suggest that the Moon's geological history has been more complex than researchers have thought. Ground-penetrating radar measurements taken by Yutu reveal at least nine subsurface layers beneath CE-3’s landing site, indicating that multiple geologic processes have taken place there.
Professor Long Xiao of China University of Geosicences (Wuhan) and colleagues analyzed the Moon mission’s data, attribute these layers to ancient lava flows and the weathering of rocks and boulders into regolith, or loose layers of dust, over the past 3.3 billion years or so. They also suggest that CE-3’s landing site is compositionally distinct from previous Moon-landing sites.
Some of the images for the slideshow are provided by Professor Long Xiao.
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