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Zone 3 spans selenographic longitude 10°E to 30°E and contains
sights best observed about five or six days after the new or full Moon.
KEY
Lunar 100 objects that have not yet been photographed.
Lunar 100 objects that have been photographed.
Other objects that have been photographed.
The Lunar 100 list is from "Introducing the Lunar 100" by Charles A. Wood (Sky & Telescope, Sky Publishing Corp., April 2004, Vol. 107, No. 4, pp. 113-120). All rights remain with Sky Publishing Corp. I (MSS) have transcribed this list for my personal use and any errors are mine.

Unless stated otherwise, all photographs will be oriented such that north is up and lunar west to the left.

7 Altai Scarp Nectaris basin rim 24.3°S 22.6°E 425 km Rükl 57
8 Theophilus, Cyrillus, Catharina Crater sequence illustrating stages of degradation 13.2°S 24.0°E 110 km Rükl 46,57
lunar100 7, 8

01:05 UTC April 15, 2005
1/15 sec - f4.9 - ISO 400
3.0× telephoto
12.0 mm eyepiece (312x)
This image was actually taken just before sunset. It is an average of seven images. An unsharp mask (3.0, 1.0, 0) was applied and the contrast was enhanced slightly.

Catharina at the top, Cyrillus just below and to the west and Theophilus near the center (L8) are the three prominant craters in the upper half of the image. Note that Catharina overlaps Cyrillus and has almost no smaller craters on its floor and rim, Cyrillus shows a few and Theophilus shows several. This indicates that Catharina is a relatively young crater, Cyrillus is middle-aged and Theophilus is an older crater.

The The illuminated cliff face at the bottom is the Altai Scarp (L7) and is also known as Rupes Altai. The cliff, which is almost 500 km long and 1000 m high, is actually part of the Mare Nectaris basin wall.



18 Mare Serenitatis dark edges Distinct mare areas with different compositions 17.8°N 23.0°E   Rükl 24
41 Bessel ray Ray of uncertain origin near Bessel 21.8°N 17.9°E   Rükl 24
lunar18, 41

01:59 UTC January 7, 2006
1/8 sec - f4.9 - ISO 100
3.0× telephoto
25.0 mm eyepiece with barlow (291.8×)
This is an average of sixteen images. The red-green-blue components were aligned, the contrast enhanced slightly and an unsharp mask (3.0; 1.0; 0) was applied.

The region to the southeast is near the formal boundary between two maria, Serenitatis to the north and Tranquillitatis to the south. It appears that the basaltic lava released in the creation of one mare has lapped over the edges of the other (L18). Typically on the Moon, lighter means newer which implies that Serenitatis is the newer but I've found no unambiguous statement of this in the on-line literature. Contradicting the "lighter is newer" is the fact that the darker maria are newer than the lighter highlands but this contradiction results from slightly different chemical compositions of the maria and highland material. Certainly the craters lying on the maria are newer than the underlying mare and several craters in this photo show surrounding aprons of lighter material. Even here, the interpretation is not so easy. In some instances, the meteor can punch through a surface layer and throw up different material buried underneath. So, the rule holds but its interpretation is sometimes difficult.

Speaking of lighter material, note the relative isolated crater west of center in this photo. This is Bessel. Now note the streak of lighter material running from the north-northeast to south-southwest. This is the Bessel ray (L41). This ray appears similar to other bright lunar rays radiating from big, young craters like Tycho but the source crater for this material is not known.

Just out of frame to the east is the landing site for Apollo 17. The distinct crater in the highlands on the edge to the southwest is Menelaus, number 27 on the NexStar 50 Lunar List which states that "at full Moon one of the brightest points".



29 Aridaeus Rille Long, linear graben 6.4°N 14.0°E 250 km Rükl 34
38 Sabine and Ritter Possible twin impacts 1.7°N 19.7°E 30 km Rükl 35
50 Cayley Plains Light, smooth plains of uncertain origin 4.0°N 15.1°E 14 km Rükl 34
63 Imbrium sculpture Basin ejecta near and overlying Boscovich and Julius Caesar 11.0°N 12.0°E   Rükl 34
lunar29, 38, 50, 63

01:59 UTC January 7, 2006
1/8 sec - f4.9 - ISO 100
3.0× telephoto
25.0 mm eyepiece with barlow (291.8×)
This is an average of sixteen images. The red-green-blue components were aligned, the contrast enhanced slightly and an unsharp mask (3.0; 1.0; 0) was applied.

This is a region rich with lunar sights and has become one of my favorites. Again, Menelaus NexStar 50 Lunar List item 27 is top center. The grooved appearing region north of center is L63, the Imbrium sculpture. Near the center are the badly degraded craters Boscovich (left) and Julius Caesar (right). Below Julius Caesar is L29, the Aridaeus Rille and the smoother area just below that is L50, the Cayley Plains (the largest of those smaller craters is Cayley). The bright-walled crater near the bottom to the right is Dionysius, (N13) NexStar 50 Lunar List item number 13 and the source of L93, dark rays. I see no real indication of these dark rays in this photo and so make no claim. Finally, just to the right of Dionysius is L38, the twin craters Ritter (left) and Sabine (right).



33 Serpentine Ridge Basin inner-ring segment 27.3°N 25.3°E 155 km Rükl 24
lunar100 33

01:13 UTC April 15, 2005
1/8 sec - f4.9 - ISO 400
3.0× telephoto
12.0 mm eyepiece (312x)
This is an average of three images. An unsharp mask (3.0, 0.5, 0) was applied. The change in shading in the lower-right corner is an artifact of the averaging.

The Serpentine Ridge (L33) was so obvious this evening that I took the pictures based upon its striking appearance before realizing it was part of this list.



45 Maurolycus Region of saturation cratering 42.0°S 14.0°E 114 km Rükl 66
lunar45

01:53 UTC January 7, 2006
1/8 sec - f4.9 - ISO 100
3.0× telephoto
25.0 mm eyepiece with barlow (291.8×)
This is an average of sixteen images. The red-green-blue components were aligned, the contrast enhanced slightly and an unsharp mask (3.0; 1.0; 0) was applied.

Maurolycus, the larger crater on the right, is L45. To its left are Nicolai and smaller Faraday.



90 Armstrong, Aldrin, and Collins Small craters near the Apollo 11 landing site 1.3°N 23.7°E 3 km Rükl 35
lunar90

01:10 UTC April 15, 2005
1/4 sec - f4.9 - ISO 400
3.0× telephoto
12.0 mm eyepiece (312x)
An unsharp mask (3.0, 1.0, 0) was applied.

If this was a better photograph, it would be possible to vaguely see Armstrong crater and, possible hints of Aldrin and Collins craters. There is a slightly lighter spot at the location of Armstrong but it is just as likely this is a variation in the surface color or noise in the image itself. Still, I was very excited to know I was looking at the Apollo 11 landing site.

Using information from the Digital Lunar Orbiter Photographic Atlas of the Moon, I've labeled several craters and the approximate location of the Apollo 11 landing site, and those of the Surveyor 5 and Ranger 8 probes.



96 Leibnitz Mountains Rim of South Pole-Aitken basin 85.0°S 30.0°E   Rükl 73,V
Leibnitz Mountains

04:33 UTC January 13, 2006
1/60 sec - f4.9 - ISO 100
3.0× telephoto
12.0 mm eyepiece (312x)
This is a combination of eight B&W photos. I enhanced the contrast and applied an unsharp mask (3.0; 1.0; 0.0) to each. I averaged the individual images and, again, applied an unsharp mask (3.0; 1.0; 0.0) and enhanced the contrast. The shadowing in the corners is vignetting. The camera is seeing to the edge of the eyepiece. Move the cursor over the image to see individual mountains labelled.

The name Leibnitz Mountains is not an officially sanctioned name but has been in common use for many years. The two peaks at the edge of the Moon's disk are designated M4 and M5 and are estimated to be 9,100 m (30,000 ft) in height. A little inward from the edge are two more peaks casting shadows towards the edge. These are M1 and M3 and are 4,600 and 7,600 m (15,000 and 25,000 ft) respectively. Some of this information comes from the Astrospider Lunar 100 entry on the Leibnitz Mountains by Mike Tyrrell and "Observing the Lunar Libration Zones" by Alexander Vandenbohede.



Last modified: 2009-04-25