Schröter's Valley

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Schröter's Valley

(former IAU name; current IAU name: Vallis Schröteri)

Lat: 26.16°N, Long: 51.58°W, Length: 185.32 km, Depth: -1 km, Rükl: 18

external image normal_Aristarchus%20&%20Herodotus%20AS15-88-12002.jpg

external image normal_Schroters%20Valley%20AS15-93-12628.jpg

Left: Apollo 15 - AS15-88-12002 processed by Stefan Lammel (photo is from north, looking south); only the eastern portion of the valley is visible, including the Cobra Head region between Aristarchus (bright crater on left) and Herodotus (flooded crater on right). Most of the rilles in the lower left part of the frame are regarded as part of Rimae Aristarchus, a separate rille system. The name Schröter's Valley applies only to the broad channel originating near Herodotus and its extension to the west.
Right: Apollo 15 image AS15-93-12628 Showing the remainder (western part) of Vallis Schröteri. Note the smaller rille meandering along the valley floor.


LPOD Photo Gallery Lunar Orbiter Images Apollo Images Hubble Space Telescope Image Kaguya HDTV

  • René Cantin's mosaic of several orbital Apollo 15 Hasselblads show the whole of Vallis Schröteri. Source: Eric M. Jones' Apollo Lunar Surface Journal.
  • LRO WAC mosaic


(LAC zone 38B3) LAC map (west) LAC map (east) Geologic map (west) Geologic map (east) LM map (west) LM map (east) LTO map


(IAU Directions) (see Herodotus): The great serpentine cleft, discovered by Schroter, October 7, 1787, is in many respects the most interesting object of its class. It commences at the N. end of a short wide valley, traversing mountains some distance N.W. of Herodotus, as a comparatively delicate cleft. After following a somewhat irregular course towards the N.E. for about 50 miles, and becoming gradually wider and deeper, it makes a sudden turn and runs for about 10 miles in a S.E. direction. It then changes its course as abruptly to the N.E. again for 3 or 4 miles, once more turns to the S.E., and, as a much coarser chasm, maintains this direction for about 20 miles, till it reaches the S.W. edge of a great mountain plateau N. of Aristarchus, when it swerves slightly towards the S., becoming wider and wider, up to a place a few miles N. of Herodotus, where it expands into a broad valley; and then, somewhat suddenly contracting in width, and becoming less coarse, enters the ring-plain through a gap in the N. wall, as before mentioned. I always find that portion of the valley in the neighbourhood of Herodotus more or less indistinct, though it is broad and deep. This part of it, unless it is observed at a late stage of sunrise, is obscured by the shadow of the mountains on the border of the plateau. Gruithuisen suspected a cleft crossing the region embraced by the serpentine valley, forming a connection between its coarse southern extremity and the long straight section. This has been often searched for, but never found. It may exist, nevertheless, for in many instances Gruithuisen's discoveries, though for a long time discredited, have been confirmed.


Vallis Schröteri

Additional Information

  • IAU page: Vallis Schröteri
  • Depth data from Kurt Fisher database
    • Viscardy, 1985: -1 km
    • Cherrington, 1969: -0.16 km
  • Feature with the third largest number of transient lunar phenomena reports: 20; (A.P.S. Crotts, 2007).
  • Elger repeats the usual story of the discovery of this feature by Johann Schröter in 1787. According to former Sky and Telescope editor Joseph Ashbrook, "Schröter's" valley had actually been seen by Christiaan Huygens and recorded by him as early as May 1686, although this fact was little known until the publication of Huygen’s Collected Works in 1925. - JimMosher
  • Thermal anomaly walls, implying steep slopes and exposure of fresh boulders - Moore et al, 1980


LROC Articles

LPOD Articles

Lunar 100

  • L17: Giant sinuous rille.


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