Mare Serenitatis

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Serenitatis Basin

(unofficial name; IAU feature name for central 707 km of mare: Mare Serenitatis)

Lat: 28.0°N, Long: 17.5°E, Main ring diam: 920 km, Basin depth: 2.14 km, Rükl: 23

external image normal_MSerenitatis050923.jpgexternal image normal_Bessel_MSeren_SJP_7-21-2007.jpg
Left: Peter Lloyd Right: Simon J. Porter


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(LAC zone 42A3) LAC map Geologic map LM map LTO map

Basin Classification

(description of terms and most numeric basin data from Wood, C.A. (2004) Impact Basin Database)
Certainty of Existence
Wilhelms Age Group
Ring Diameters
Mare Thickness
410, 620, 920, 1300, 1800 km
1.3-4.3 km
Yes; +102 mG gravity anomaly


Description: Wikipedia

Mare Serenitatis

Additional Information


The IAU feature name means "Sea of Serenity".
  • Named Regio Magna Occidentalis (Large Western Region) in pre-telescopic sketch map by William Gilbert in ~1600 - Name also included most other eastern maria! [Whitaker: Mapping and Naming the Moon, p 15]
  • The impact basin is named after the mare.

The Bessel Ray (the first named example of this kind of high-albedo rays?)

The 21st Century Atlas of the Moon (Charles A. Wood/ Maurice J.S. Collins) is perhaps the very first lunar atlas which has a name for the mysterious high-albedo ray running across Mare Serenitatis and crater Bessel. This ray is one of the most stubborn riddles in the history of moon observing and selenography. What is the source of this remarkable singular ray of ejecta? Is Bessel the source? Or is it a crater to the north of Mare Serenitatis? Or perhaps to the south? It's very strange that this kind of pronounced rays (ejecta rays from impact craters) don't have official IAU names. Anyway, Chart 11 (page 35) in the 21st Century Atlas of the Moon shows the informal name Bessel Ray just north of crater Bessel. How many (ancient or recent) moonbooks have a description of the mysterious Bessel Ray in Mare Serenitatis?

LPOD Articles

Serenitatis in Black and White and Gray
Serenitatis Diameter Sequence
Make Your Own Atlas
Bright Moon (Mare Serenitatis during Full Moon).

Lunar 100

L18: Distinct mare areas with different compositions.


- The southern regions of Mare Serenitatis:
APOLLO OVER THE MOON; A VIEW FROM ORBIT, Chapter 4: The Maria (Part 1), Figure 58.
- The eastern coastline of Mare Serenitatis:
AOTM, Chapter 2: Regional views, Figure 27.
AOTM, Chapter 4: The Maria (Part 2), Figure 74.
- The western coastline of Mare Serenitatis:
AOTM, Chapter 2: Regional views, Figure 28.