Rayleigh (lunar crater)

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Rayleigh
Rayleigh LROC.jpg
LRO image
Coordinates 29°18′N 89°36′E / 29.3°N 89.6°E / 29.3; 89.6Coordinates: 29°18′N 89°36′E / 29.3°N 89.6°E / 29.3; 89.6
Diameter 107 km
Depth Unknown
Colongitude 273° at sunrise
Eponym Lord Rayleigh
Oblique Apollo 14 Hasselblad camera image
Rayleigh and surroundings. NASA photo.

Rayleigh is a lunar crater that lies along the northeast limb of the Moon. This feature is seen edge-on from Earth, making it difficult to see much detail. In addition, libration effects can completely hide this crater from view. It lies just to the north of Lyapunov, and to the northwest of the large Joliot. Attached to its southwest rim is the smaller Urey.

This is an eroded formation with a rim that has been worn and reshaped by impacts. This is particularly so in the south where the rim has been modified and supplemented by adjacent crater formations and several small craters that lie along the rim.

The interior floor is relatively level in places, but, partly due to overlapping ejecta, is somewhat rough and irregular in others, particularly in the southern half. A pair of small but prominent craters lies on the interior surface, with Rayleigh D just to the south of the crater midpoint and the smaller Rayleigh B situated in the western half.

Rayleigh was named for John William Strutt, 3rd Baron Rayleigh.[1]

Satellite craters[edit]

By convention these features are identified on lunar maps by placing the letter on the side of the crater midpoint that is closest to Rayleigh.

Rayleigh Latitude Longitude Diameter
B 28.9° N 88.4° E 14 km
C 31.4° N 85.7° E 22 km
D 28.9° N 89.7° E 22 km

The following craters have been renamed by the IAU.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Rayleigh". Gazetteer of Planetary Nomenclature. United States Geological Survey. Retrieved 2014-06-27.