Picard (crater)

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Picard crater AS17-M-0289.jpg
Apollo 17 Mapping camera image
Coordinates 14°34′N 54°43′E / 14.57°N 54.72°E / 14.57; 54.72Coordinates: 14°34′N 54°43′E / 14.57°N 54.72°E / 14.57; 54.72
Diameter 23 km
Depth 2.4 km
Colongitude 306° at sunrise
Eponym Jean-Félix Picard

Picard is a lunar impact crater that lies in Mare Crisium. It is the biggest non-flooded crater of this mare, being slightly larger than Peirce to the north-northwest. To the west is the almost completely flooded crater Yerkes. To east of Picard is the tiny Curtis. Also to the southwest is the Greaves-Lick crater pair. About 35–40 km southeast is the wrinkle ridge known as Dorsum Termier.

Picard is a crater from the Eratosthenian period, which lasted from 3.2 to 1.1 billion years ago. Inside Picard is a series of terraces that seismologists have attributed to a collapse of the crater floor. It has a cluster of low hills at the bottom.[1]


The crater is named for 17th century French astronomer and geodesist Jean Picard.[2] In Johannes Hevelius, he mapped it as an island named "Alopecia Insula" of the ancient world.[3] The feature was unappeared in Giovanni Riccioli's 1651 map and the feature was left unnamed for a few centuries.

Satellite craters[edit]

Satellite craters of Picard

By convention these features are identified on lunar maps by placing the letter on the side of the crater midpoint that is closest to Picard.[4] Between 100 and 120 km south are five of its six satellite craters, the other being Picard Y is more than 125 km east.

Oblique Lunar Orbiter 4 image
Oblique Apollo 15 Panoramic Camera image, facing south
Picard Coordinates Diameter, km
K 9°44′N 54°34′E / 9.73°N 54.56°E / 9.73; 54.56 (Picard K) 9
L 10°19′N 54°19′E / 10.32°N 54.31°E / 10.32; 54.31 (Picard L) 7
M 10°13′N 53°57′E / 10.21°N 53.95°E / 10.21; 53.95 (Picard M) 8
N 10°31′N 53°34′E / 10.52°N 53.57°E / 10.52; 53.57 (Picard N) 19
P 8°49′N 53°37′E / 8.82°N 53.62°E / 8.82; 53.62 (Picard P) 8
Y 13°11′N 60°16′E / 13.18°N 60.27°E / 13.18; 60.27 (Picard Y) 4

The following craters have been renamed by the IAU.


  1. ^ Moore, Patrick (2001). On the Moon. Sterling Publishing Co.. ISBN 0-304-35469-4.
  2. ^ "Picard (crater)". Gazetteer of Planetary Nomenclature. USGS Astrogeology Research Program.
  3. ^ Hevelius map of the Moon (1647)
  4. ^ Bussey, B.; Spudis, P. (2004). The Clementine Atlas of the Moon. New York: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0-521-81528-2. 

External links[edit]